October 31st, 2011
|08:01 pm - Five Short Stories for Hallowe'en|
The Willows: Algernon Blackwood
I saw it through a veil that hung before my eyes like the gauze drop-curtain used at the back of a theatre -- hazily a little. It was neither a human figure nor an animal. To me it gave the strange impression of being as large as several animals grouped together, like horses, two or three, moving slowly. The Swede, too, got a similar result, though expressing it differently, for he thought it was shaped and sized like a clump of willow bushes, rounded at the top, and moving all over upon its surface -- "coiling upon itself like smoke," he said afterwards.
The Great God Pan: Arthur Machen
"We are standing on the brink of a strange world, Raymond, if what you say is true. I suppose the knife is absolutely necessary?"
"Yes; a slight lesion in the grey matter, that is all; a trifling rearrangement of certain cells."
The Whisperer in Darkness: HP Lovecraft.
the substance of the recording was quasi-ritualistic, and included one palpably human voice which Akeley had never been able to place. It was not Brown's, but seemed to be that of a man of greater cultivation. The second voice, however, was the real crux of the thing - for this was the accursed buzzing which had no likeness to humanity despite the human words.
The Cask of Amontillado: E A Poe
I thrust a torch through the remaining aperture and let it fall within. There came forth in return only a jingling of the bells. My heart grew sick -- on account of the dampness of the catacombs. I hastened to make an end of my labour. I forced the last stone into its position; I plastered it up. For the half of a century no mortal has disturbed them.
The Story of a Disappearance and an Appearance: MR James
The play began on the stroke of a quarter to three by the church clock. Certainly it was very good; and I was soon relieved to find that the disgust my dream had given me for Punch’s onslaughts on his ill-starred visitors was only transient. I laughed at the demise of the Turncock, the Foreigner, the Beadle, and even the baby. The only drawback was the Toby dog’s developing a tendency to howl in the wrong place. Something had occurred, I suppose, to upset him...
M R James -- wonderful stuff. I've been terrified by some of his stories since I was a teenager -- back when rocks were soft.
I saw a Punch and Judy show for the first time in years yesterday, which is why I picked that one. The plot of Punch and Judy is kind of disturbing, but the tiny tots loved it.
I can not understand some teachers. I would be so pleased to have a student who had a passionate and original opinion on any subject.