something wicked this way comes


' "First things first. Let's bone up on history. If men had wanted to stay bad forever, they could have, agreed? Agreed. Did we stay out in the fields with the beasts? No. In the water with the barracuda? No. Somewhere we let go of the hot gorilla's paw. Somewhere we turned in our carnivore's teeth and started chewing blades of grass. We been working mulch as much as blood, into our philosophy, for quite a few lifetimes. Since then we measure ourselves up the scale from apes, but not half so high as angels. It was a nice new idea and we were afraid we'd lose it, so we put it on paper and built buildings like this one around it. And we been going in and out of these buildings chewing it over, that one new sweet blade of grass, trying to figure how it all started, when we made the move, when we decided to be different. I suppose one night hundreds of thousands of years ago in a cave by a night fire when one of those shaggy men wakened to gaze over the banked coals at his woman, his children, and thought of their being cold, dead, gone forever. Then he must have wept. And he put out his hand in the night to the woman who must die some day and to the children who must follow her. And for a little bit next morning, he treated them somewhat better, for he saw that they, like himself, had the seed of night in them. He felt that seed like slime in his pulse, splitting, making more against the day they would multiply his body into darkness. So that man, the first one, knew what we know now: out hour is short, eternity is long. With this knowledge came pity and mercy, so we spared others for the later, more intricate, more mysterious benefits of love.
So, in sum, what are we? We are the creatures that know and know too much. That leaves us with such a burden again we have a choice, to laugh or cry. No other animal does either. We do both, depending on the season and the need. Somehow, I feel the carnival watches, to see which we're doing and how and why, and moves in on us when it feels we're ripe." '


Something Wicked This Way Comes
(Pages 175-6)



It often strikes me that i've become desensitised to 'horror'.
I can watch/read a bloodbath and barely flinch.
And this 'horror blindness' has somewhat spoiled classic spine-tinglers for me.
I was not impressed in the slightest with Carrie.
Lovecraft leaves me slightly bored and bemused.
The Haunting of Hill House is a story i absolutely adore but it doesn't scare me.
Not even a tiny bit.
Again, I Am Legend is a firm favourite but in no way gets my heart racing.
(from fear, not storyline)
Poe is much like Lovecraft.
The Wasp Factory definitely gave me creeps and i felt genuinely violated once i'd finished but again, not scared.
Toni Morrison's, Beloved is more about severed love than it is terror, although the two often go hand in hand.
The Descent is probably the closest i've come to real fear but it ebbed away almost as soon as it pounced.

I really could go on but the pattern remains the same.
Literature doesn't scare me.
I am dead inside.
Numbed by gory movies and the influx of supernatural tv series i can't help but get my grubby paws all over.
The subtlety of fear has been corrupted for me and that, to be blunt, sucks.

So...i wasn't expecting much when i decided to pull Something Wicked This Way Comes down from my ever diminishing shelves...and i was right.
I wasn't scared.
Nor creeped out.
Or struck down with a sudden case of the fear induced shivers.
But it was beautiful.
Somehow, Bradbury manages to imprint a heartbeat into his writing.
It jitters and flinches.
And for the first time, in a long time, i felt what i'd been missing out on.
Not fear but misguided curiosity.
If Mr Dark's carnival was real, he'd have me in an instant.
And i'm not sure if i'd mind.