From Even the Greatest of Horrors Irony is Seldom Absent: The Words

Hardy a surprise that someone as I would choose such a person to idolize, though it may come as a surprise to find that I do not, in fact, idolize H.P. Lovecraft. If anything, I envy him, even distain him. Don’t get me wrong, I do love Lovecraft, though not in the way you would assume.

Lovecraft is eloquently spoken and undeniably gifted, but he is cold, unfeeling, and calloused. This element is what drew me to him originally: his macabre apathy. He writes a world of strange horrors, but he does not share the romanticism of Edgar Allan Poe or passion of F. Scott Fitzgerald. Lovecraft is stern. Undefiable lines of emotion are written into his works yet the barriers of reality remain permeable. He knows of horror, yes, great fears that terrorize your soul into approaching madness. Yet, he knows not of tragedy and the anguish of a heart that has antecedently broken. Once, I was largely similar, however his writing has changed this perspective toward indifference within me. I was addicted to this non-emotion like a cigarette twixt my lips. Seeing an author just the same, I latched onto him and for years never took the time to contemplate why. “Why” is what I ask now, and I have come to the conclusion that Lovecraft embodies everything that I once was. He was my outcasted twin from a different century. He evolved into a being enamoured by the horrors of the unknown and nothing more, while I have become acquainted with monolithic passions that send me barreling through the unknown.

Like the rubber-ish tentacles of Cthulhu, I am green with envy. Or maybe I’m not. Envy, I find, is often easily confused with loathing. I envy his unfeeling, simultaneously holding it in contempt. It is everything I have wished to be and everything that has ever hurt me. Lovecraft’s writing wholly embodies the the revulsion to which his characters are subjected, lingering infatuation and disgust. This is what I used to strive for: to be so in love with the foul being of which I write while at the same time degrading them into static, devilish monsters, all the while having the skill and ability to project this within the reader. Here, I bring in “The Outsider (H.P. Lovecraft),” a tale of insidious naivety. (Honestly, this is the time where I reccomend you go read the short story. Seriously, read it. ) Our unseen narrator lives in the most undiluted form of loneliness, reading about a world of which he has never experienced. Fuelled to be part of this written world, he breaks from his solitary confinement to find those he encounter terrorized by a monstrous behemoth. Touching the beast, he touches the glass of a mirror. This piece is single-handedly the most influential element of my life (to date). It is one of the few times Lovecraft actually has shown more than just terror; here he shows an innocent grief. Innocent grief: a sinless child whom upon reaching out to the world is varnished in the world’s hatred.

I’m innocent. Or at least I was. I want to love as much as be loved, but my mind is ill. With illness comes a perceived toxicity that if anyone so much as dares to get close, it will trickle from my eyes and devour them as it once did me.

H.P. Lovecraft knows how to terrify, though I want to cast feeling as much as fear. I feel the same toward Lovecraft as he does his monsters: infatuated and repelled. Perhaps, I am one of Lovecraft’s monsters and he is mine.

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One thought on “From Even the Greatest of Horrors Irony is Seldom Absent: The Words

  1. Dear Katherine,

    I want to begin by saying that your writing is marvelous. Your syntax is lovely without obscuring meaning. Your metaphors are unapologetic, effective, and flow naturally with all the other beautiful language infused into your blog. Often, those with an elaborate writing style create monotonous, mind-numbing paragraphs. However, you wield your exquisite mastery of words elegantly and with control, which is very commendable.

    One phrase of yours I especially loved is: “Undefiable lines of emotion are written into his works yet the barriers of reality remain permeable.”. With this line in particular, you showed an enviable ease in expressing complex ideas. With one sentence, you presented the paradox of Lovecraft’s bending the solidity of reality while, to him, simple emotions are intangible. Your ability to concisely convey such a concept shows incredible depth of thought, creativity, and skill. (I couldn’t even summarize your sentence without sounding convoluted!)

    Another part of your blog I adore was your use of simile and metaphor. Your lines: “I was addicted to this non-emotion like a cigarette twixt my lips” and “varnished in the world’s hatred”, created very powerful images to reinforce your ideas. These additions to your writing solidify your meaning by allowing your reader to connect personally. With metaphor, you transplanted your concepts right into my mind’s eye.

    Honestly, there is not much I can find to critique. The only thing I can think of is just a formatting technicality. You have most of the meat of your blog post in a big block right under the initial image and just a couple lines wayyyyyyy down below another picture (super cool images by the way!). At first, I thought your blog ended at “world’s hatred”. If I hadn’t scrolled down toward the comments I may have missed the genius of your closing lines!! Maybe next time either make the images smaller or block your text in a more consistent format. But that is just a minor, nit-picky thing. I thought everything else about your blog was magnificent, and I’ll definitely be checking out H.P. Lovecraft’s writing!

    I really related to your battle with emotion. Feelings can certainly bring light and joy into a life, but they can also suffocate. It is a treacherous balancing act between the two extremes. Anyways, thank you for this little glimpse into your mind!



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