There is another world, but it is in this one.

Paul Eluard. Œuvres complètes, vol. 1, Gallimard, 1968.

Friday, October 6, 2017

A note on The Tugging by Ramsey Campbell

A few underlinings made a year ago while reading Ramsey Campbell's "The Tugging" in The Disciples of Cthulhu.


The Tugging by Ramsey Campbell

“I used to dream a lot when I was young,” he said. “Not your average childhood dream, if there is such a thing. There was one I remember, about these enormous clouds of matter floating in outer space, forming very slowly into something. I mean very slowly … I woke up long before they got there, yet while I was dreaming I knew whatever it was would have a face, and that made me very anxious to wake up....

....some people are sensitive to the full moon, that’s well enough documented. And I always used to begin by dreaming I could see the full moon over the sea, way out in the middle of the ocean. I could see the reflection resting on the water, and after a while I’d always find myself thinking it wasn’t the moon at all but a great pale face peering up out of the ocean....

....The next moment an island rose out of the ocean with a roaring like a waterfall, louder than that, louder than anything I’ve ever heard while trembling. The next moment an island rose out of the ocean with a roaring like a waterfall, louder than that, louder than anything I’ve ever heard while awake; I could actually feel my ears bursting. There was a city on the island, all huge greenish blocks with sea and seaweed pouring off them. And the mud was boiling with stranded creatures, panting and bursting. Right in front of me and above me and below me there was a door. Mud was trickling down from it, and I knew that the great pale face I was terrified of was behind the door, getting ready to come out, opening its eyes in the dark. I woke up then, and that was the end of the dreams....

....He sagged on the bed and was asleep at once.

The darkness drew him out, coaxing him forward, swimming softly through his eyes. A great silent darkness surrounded him....

....He found that part of his mind had fastened telescopically on details of the worlds he’d passed: cities of globes acrawl with black winged insects; mountains carved or otherwise formed into heads within whose hollow sockets worshippers squirmed; a sea from whose depths rose a jointed arm, reaching miles inland with a filmy web of skin to net itself food. One tiny world in particular seemed to teem with life that was aware of him.

Deep in one of its seas a city slept, and he shared the dreams of its sleepers: of an infancy spent in a vast almost lightless cave, tended by a thin rustling shape so tall its head was lost to sight; of flight to this minute but fecund planet; of dancing hugely and clumsily beneath the light of a fragment they’d torn free of this world and flung into space; of dormancy in the submarine basalt tombs. Dormant, they waited and shared the lives of other similar beings active on the surface; for a moment he was the inhabitant of a black city deserted by its builders, coming alert and groping lazily forth as a pale grub fled along a path between the buildings.

....LSD CAUSES ATTEMPTED SUICIDE, said the cutting. American student claims that in LSD “vision” he was told that the planet now passing through our solar system heralded the rising of Atlantis. Threw himself from second-storey window. Insists that the rising of Atlantis means the end of humanity....

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