Saturday, January 4, 2014

some thing in moonlight



I read this story again to-night, at the finest Lovecraft site in existence -- www.hplovecraft.com -- where they have the letter to Derleth in which the dream is told side by side with ye text of the story as it was publish'd by Miske and Derleth.  This dream has inspir'd so many Lovecraftian writers!  One of my all-time
TROLLEY NO. 1852 by Edward Lee--a Lovecraftian porn novel that is excellent, with an authentic and effective Lovecraftian cosmicism that really got to me and thrill'd my sense of wonder.  There are two images from Lovecraft's dream that powerfully effect the weird artist's imagination:  the abandoned haunted derelict trolley itself, and the bestial conductors with their blood-tipped cones.  I used the images from this story myself, in section XXXIV of Some Unknown Gulf of Night.  The story, or fragment as it is sometimes referred to, has been dropped in all of the editions of Lovecraft's tales edited by S. T. Joshi, who insists that the story, as it stands, is not by Lovecraft.  And yet, the images from Lovecraft's dream are so potent and deliciously horrifying that I am always happy when the wee tale is publish'd, as it was in Eldritch Tales: A Miscellany of the Macabre in England (Gollancz 2011, edited by Stephen Jones).

It strikes me as curious that no one, to my knowledge, has completed a wee film adaptation of "The Thing in the Doorstep" for presentation at the H. P. Lovecraft Film Festival & CthulhuCon.  Those weird images are so haunting and the situation
of the dream so dramatic that it cou'd make a sensational short film.  The power of the vignette lies in its utter weirdness and in its horrific power--it is a really scary tale, full of sinister mystery which explodes as riveting nightmare.  It is its horrific potency that makes other Lovecraftians want to play with the theme and imagery of Lovecraft's original dream.

H. P. Lovecraft had many such dreams, and he experimented in writing down many, which he then discarded.  I wonder how many other numerous vignettes we have lost because of this.  I'm very thankful that we have, at least, this one vital recording of a dream by E'ch-Pi-El.  His smallest tidbit nourishes our imaginations and haunts our brains.  Thus is he ever-immortal. 

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