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Despair

O’er the midnight moorlands crying,
Thro’ the cypress forests sighing,
In the night-wind madly flying,
     Hellish forms with streaming hair;
In the barren branches creaking,
By the stagnant swamp-pools speaking,
Past the shore-cliffs ever shrieking;
     Damn’d daemons of despair.
Once, I think I half remember,
Ere the grey skies of November
Quench’d my youth’s aspiring ember,
     Liv’d there such a thing as bliss;
Skies that now are dark were beaming,
Gold and azure, splendid seeming
Till I learn’d it all was dreaming —
     Deadly drowsiness of Dis.
But the stream of Time, swift flowing,
Brings the torment of half-knowing —
Dimly rushing, blindly going
     Past the never-trodden lea;
And the voyager, repining,
Sees the wicked death-fires shining,
Hears the wicked petrel’s whining
      As he helpless drifts to sea.
Evil wings in ether beating;
Vultures at the spirit eating;
Things unseen forever fleeting
     Black against the leering sky.
Ghastly shades of bygone gladness,
Clawing fiends of future sadness,
Mingle in a cloud of madness
     Ever on the soul to lie.
Thus the living, lone and sobbing,
In the throes of anguish throbbing,
With the loathsome Furies robbing
     Night and noon of peace and rest.
But beyond the groans and grating
Of abhorrent Life, is waiting
Sweet Oblivion, culminating
     All the years of fruitless quest.


From Wikipedia: Howard Phillips Lovecraft (August 20, 1890 – March 15, 1937), of Providence, Rhode Island, was an American author of fantasy, horror, and science fiction.

Lovecraft’s major inspiration and invention was cosmic horror: life is incomprehensible to human minds and the universe is fundamentally alien. Those who genuinely “reason”, like his protagonists, gamble with sanity. Lovecraft has become a cult figure for his Cthulhu Mythos, a series of loosely interconnected fictions featuring a pantheon of human-invalidating entities, as well as the famed Necronomicon, a grimoire of magical rites and forbidden lore. His works were deeply pessimistic, fabricating a mythos that challenged the values of the Enlightenment, Romanticism, and Christianity.

Although Lovecraft’s readership was limited during his life, his reputation has grown over the decades, and he is now commonly regarded as one of the most influential horror writers of the 20th Century, exerting widespread and indirect influence, and frequently compared to Edgar Allan Poe in the tone of his writing style.


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