Airy Persiflage
The Oracle, by Robert Bloch

The Oracle, by Robert Bloch

June 14, 2020

An Oracle

Robert Bloch wrote hundreds of short stories and over 30 novels. He was one of the youngest members of the Lovecraft Circle and began his professional writing career immediately after graduation, aged 17. He was a protégé of Lovecraft who was the first to seriously encourage his talent. However, while Bloch started his career by emulating Lovecraft and his brand of Cosmic Horror, he later specialized in crime and horror stories dealing with a more psychological approach.

Bloch was a contributor to pulp magazines such as Weird Tales in his early career, and was also a prolific screenwriter and a major contributor to fanzines and fandom in general.  Of course he is most easily identified as the author PSYCHO, the novel and screenplay, and sequels. ORACLE is a short story published in Penthouse, in 1971.  

The Abominations of Yondo, by Clark Ashton Smith

The Abominations of Yondo, by Clark Ashton Smith

June 12, 2020

 

Abominations Cover

I remain resolved to continue to add more Clark Ashton Smith material to Airy Persiflage.  Smith's wordplay has always delighted me; where his contemporary (and friend) Lovecraft could wax prolix page after page, Smith was both more economical in his word choice and more grandiloquent.  Both writers remind us of the potential and choices available in the English language, yet Smith, alone, always makes me scratch my head in wonder.  It's not every day I use fulvous, or hoary genii, or caparisoned.  In any event, here is Abominations, written in (probably) 1930 and often published in collections.  Forgive my sound quality.  I'm not using my favorite Microphone tonight.  

The Fungi from Yuggoth, Eighth Reading, Parts 23-26

The Fungi from Yuggoth, Eighth Reading, Parts 23-26

May 31, 2020

Fungi from Yuggoth Project

XXIII. Mirage
The narrator flows across a timestream and encounters an unknown land that he cannot tell is real or not.

XXIV. The Canal
The narrator enters an abandoned city with an endless river of black oily water.

XXV. St. Toad's
As the narrator walked the abandoned city, people whispered "Beware St. Toad's cracked chimes" which urged the narrator to run as he saw a ragged shadowy figure.

XXVI. The Familiars
In Aylesbury, the narrator witnesses a man named John Whateley, an occultist who lives on a rundown farm, who has become disfigured and is taken by night-gaunts before he could be put in an insane asylum.

Previous Posts in this Series

First Reading was retconned to be put on Podbean (contains "The Book" and "Pursuit")

Second Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "The Key" and "Recognition")

Third Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "Homecoming" and "The Lamp")

Fourth Reading was on Audio, (See post, below, containing  parts 7 "Zaman's Hill", 8 "The Port" and 9 "The Courtyard")

Fifth Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing parts 10 "the Pigeon Flyers" 11 "the Well" 12 "The Howler" 13 "Hesperia" and 14 "The Star Winds"

Sixth Reading was on Podbean (see post, below) containing Parts 15:. Antarktokos, 16: The Window, 17: A memory  and 18: the Gardens of Yin

Seventh Reading was on Podbean (see post, below), containing parts 19: The Bells, 20: Night-Gaunts, 21: Nyarlathotep, and 22: Azathoth

Visions of Sin, by Ambrose Bierce or.. “What Danehower will See…”

Visions of Sin, by Ambrose Bierce or.. “What Danehower will See…”

May 28, 2020

"What will Danehower see?" 

My favorite American person of letters is, by far and away, Mr. Ambrose Bierce.  He has eluded presentation on this series before today.  We'll have to rectify this.  Bierce was an amazing talent, far ahead of his time, a writer, journalist, poet, and one of the finest cynical minds ever created by an indifferent deity.  Here he is at the height of his powers, reporting on a young naval lieutenant who arrived home after being trapped on a Russian ice flow for two years.  

 

Song of the Necromancer, by Clark Ashton Smith

Song of the Necromancer, by Clark Ashton Smith

May 23, 2020

From Weird Tales volume 29, no. 3, 1937
Read by Walter O'Hara

The Fungi from Yuggoth by H.P. Lovecraft, Seventh Reading, parts 19-22

The Fungi from Yuggoth by H.P. Lovecraft, Seventh Reading, parts 19-22

May 22, 2020

Seventh Reading

XIX. The Bells
The narrator searched his memories to find the source of the chiming of bells on a steeple that he had recognized until, on March, he was called back to the black gulf by a cold rainfall.

XX. Night-Gaunts
From the distance of the black gulf the narrator spots Night-gaunts coming from the jagged peaks of Thok, and take him into the Nether Pits of the Underworld.

XXI. Nyarlathotep
The narrator was met by the true identity of his guider: Nyarlathotep, as he bared witness to him executing some people in an Egyptian tomb.

XXII. Azathoth
The narrator entered a spatial void where he meets Azathoth, in the presence of shapeless bat creatures dancing to music played by servitors, in which Nyarlathotep reveals that he is Azathoth's messenger.

Previous Posts in this Series

First Reading was retconned to be put on Podbean (contains "The Book" and "Pursuit")

Second Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "The Key" and "Recognition")

Third Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "Homecoming" and "The Lamp")

Fourth Reading was on Audio, (See post, below, containing  parts 7 "Zaman's Hill", 8 "The Port" and 9 "The Courtyard")

Fifth Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing parts 10 "the Pigeon Flyers" 11 "the Well" 12 "The Howler" 13 "Hesperia" and 14 "The Star Winds"

Sixth Reading was on Podbean (see post, below) containing Parts 15:. Antarktokos, 16: The Window, 17: A memory  and 18: the Gardens of Yin

 

 

THE PLAGUE SERIES

RETCON: Fungi from Yuggoth, FIRST Reading (Was on Instagram), parts 1 and 2

RETCON: Fungi from Yuggoth, FIRST Reading (Was on Instagram), parts 1 and 2

May 14, 2020

Fungi from Yuggoth

I'm retconning reality here.  I published the first two stanzas of the Fungi from Yuggoth on April 8th on Instagram.  It was clumsy to refer to a separate media channel on Instagram when most of the files are here on Podbean, so today I extracted the audio, which isn't that bad, actually.  So here it is, the original recording of Parts 1 and 2 of the Fungi from Yuggoth, H.P. Lovecraft.

Part 1. The Book  The protagonist of the entire sequence obtains a book of forgotten mysteries in an old book store.

Part 2: Pursuit  The protagonist hurries home with his treasure but can't escape the sensation that he is being followed. 

The Fungi from Yuggoth, by H.P. Lovecraft. Sixth Reading, parts 15-18. We gain some ground

The Fungi from Yuggoth, by H.P. Lovecraft. Sixth Reading, parts 15-18. We gain some ground

May 14, 2020

The Fungi From Yuggoth, by HPL

This is the Sixth Reading in the Fungi from Yuggoth Project, and it contains Sonnets 15, 16, 17 and 18.

The Fungi from Yuggoth is a sonnet sequence by supernatural horror writer H.P. Lovecraft that constitute a continuous first-person narrative. It concerns a person who obtains an ancient book of esoteric knowledge that allows one to travel to other planets and strange parts of the universe. The title is a term for the Mi-Go, an alien race the narrator encounters, which are fungoid beings resembling crustaceans which hail from the planet Yuggoth, to which the narrator has unwittingly traveled.

XV. Antarktos
A 'great bird' tells the narrator of a mountain in a polar region that might hold an untold city buried underneath.

XVI. The Window
The narrator entered a house which, in a back room, had a stone-sealed window which he recognized he looked into in his dreams, and he removed the seal to find untold worlds beyond it.

XVII. A Memory
The narrator found an expansive land of steppes and rocky table-lands inhabited by alien beings, and was met by someone who referred to him by name who would tell him where he was: the man he encountered before had brought him home.

XVIII. The Gardens of Yin
The narrator approached The Gardens of Yin, a beautiful garden behind stone walls, but found that it was aged and no longer the beautiful garden it was as the gate was gone.

Previous Posts in this Series

First Reading was retconned to be put on Podbean (contains "The Book" and "Pursuit")

Second Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "The Key" and "Recognition")

Third Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "Homecoming" and "The Lamp")

Fourth Reading was on Audio, (See post, below, containing  parts 7 "Zaman's Hill", 8 "The Port" and 9 "The Courtyard")

Fifth Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing parts 10 "the Pigeon Flyers" 11 "the Well" 12 "The Howler" 13 "Hesperia" and 14 "The Star Winds"

 

THE PLAGUE SERIES

The Fungi from Yuggoth, by H.P. Lovecraft. Fifth Reading, parts 10-14.  We pick up the pace a little.

The Fungi from Yuggoth, by H.P. Lovecraft. Fifth Reading, parts 10-14. We pick up the pace a little.

May 6, 2020

Cover from HPL book, German art

We've fallen behind our recording and this is my attempt to catch up with THE FUNGI FROM YUGGOTH.  It's a long series of stanzas.  Last time we ended with part 9, this time we will cover these parts in the fifth reading:

Part Ten: The Pigeon Flyers

The narrator was taken by these undead figures to a ritual in which birds would bring in offerings from Thog with one of them displaying an evil look.

Part Eleven: The Well

The narrator ends up helping a farmer named Seth Atwood remove a cursed well that drove his friend Eb into insanity, forcing Seth to kill him, only to find that the hole beneath the well was too deep to remove all the bricks from.

Part Twelve: The Howler

Despite warnings, the narrator went through the Briggs' Hill path which was once the highroad through to Zoar, which was destroyed by a man named Goody Watkins before he was hanged. After watching the sunset, he immediately runs upon hearing the sounds of a howling monster from a nearby house.

Part Thirteen: Hesperia

The narrator enters the land of Hesperia, which he describes as a paradise 'where beauty's meaning flowers' and a river of time brings in dreams through a starlit stream.

Part Fourteen: Star-Winds

The narrator watches the star-winds of Hesperia breeze along the cities, bringing bizarre sights and the view of the star Fomalhaut. These star-winds bring dreams and fertilize Yuggothian fungi and flowers.

That should get us back on track.  Thanks for following along everyone!

 

First Reading was retconned and put on Podbean (contains "The Book" and "Pursuit")

Second Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "The Key" and "Recognition")

Third Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "Homecoming" and "The Lamp")

Fourth Reading was on Audio, (See post, below, containing  parts 7 "Zaman's Hill", 8 "The Port" and 9 "The Courtyard")

THE PLAGUE SERIES

The Fungi from Yuggoth, by H.P. Lovecraft, Fourth Reading, parts 7-9

The Fungi from Yuggoth, by H.P. Lovecraft, Fourth Reading, parts 7-9

April 24, 2020

This is a continuation of my multipart reading of THE FUNGI FROM YUGGOTH by H.P. Lovecraft

This is the Fourth reading, parts 7 "Zaman's Hill", 8 "The Port" and 9 "The Courtyard" of the Poem.  Nine Stanzas down, Twenty-Seven left.  I think I will bump up production to four stanzas a post, or we'll never get done!

VII. Zaman's Hill
The narrator approached a hill with stories that it was alive and killed deer, birds, lost children, and a mailman from Aylesbury who had been ridiculed for saying that it was alive and ate people.

VIII. The Port
The narrator reaches a seaside port ten miles off of Arkham as the sun set, as a sailboat from his destination of Innsmouth sailed by, which the narrator did not wave to when he feels that Innsmouth was a very oddly-gray and unsettling town.

IX. The Courtyard
The narrator enters Innsmouth uncomfortable when seeing it's inhabitants, and sees them worshipping gods near the shore. He enters a courtyard which traps him with undead dancing men with no hands or heads.

First Reading was retconned from Instagram to Podbean (contains "The Book" and "Pursuit")

Second Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "The Key" and "Recognition")

Third Reading was on Audio (see post, below, containing  "Homecoming" and "The Lamp")

THE PLAGUE SERIES