Dr Seuss vs Call of Cthulhu

The Call of Cthulhu Cover [drfaustusau.deviantart.com]

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15 Responses to “Dr Seuss vs Call of Cthulhu”

  1. mazza says:

    Judging from the two pages shown here, scansion is the very last thing on the writer’s mind – they’re incredibly (almost frighteningly) clunky…

  2. franko says:

    some people believe in a zombie future. my money’s on cthulhu.

  3. Skully says:

    Yeah, I’ve read the whole thing and was disappointed. The illustrations are fantastic, but the text is tone-deaf. Funny that Doctorow singled out the scansion for praise, when there’s not a single line (that I saw) that matches the Seuss-ian scheme.

  4. Kimmo says:

    Shame about the clunky text then, but I’m still creaming myself at the prospect of the Suess aesthetic blended with Lovecraft’s…

    I’m off for a look.

  5. Prufrock451 says:

    “Would you, could you, in the darkest reaches of a realm beyond the wildest dreams of humanity, an eldritch domain filled with furtive monstrosities whose decrepit minds blaze only with fierce unthinking malevolence, their shambling existence a blasphemy against the very idea of reason, leaving humanity’s work a mere palimpsest upon antediluvian evil which scrabbles to claw its way into our light, orderly world?”

    “I would not, could not, in the darkest reaches of a realm beyond the wildest dreams of humanity, an eldritch domain filled with furtive monstrosities whose decrepit minds blaze only with fierce unthinking malevolence, their shambling existence a blasphemy against the very idea of reason, leaving humanity’s work a mere palimpsest upon antediluvian evil which scrabbles to claw its way into our light, orderly world, for a descent into so loathsome a mire of noisome shadows would leave me a gibbering wreck.”

  6. Listener43 says:

    Chthulu in 2012 – why settle for the Lesser of two Evils?

    • Noah Sheola says:

      Read it out loud while you tap your foot.  It scans, and the rhyme scheme is just what you would expect in Seuss.  It feels clunky because of the grown-up, polysyllabic vocabulary, but I think that’s kind of the point.

      • mazza says:

        The rhyme scheme imitates Seuss at an A-A-B-B or A-B-C-B level, as on the two pages shown. But consider how you have to stress the words in order to make them fit the rhythm. “The piece had been made by the sculptor Wilcox…” demands to be read with the stress on “-cox…”, but sense says that the emphasis should fall on ‘sculptor’. Then the next two lines demand that you stress first the word ‘had’ – which is plain wrong – and secondly, in the word ‘Cyclopean’ , that you stress the second syllable – the ‘clop’ – which is not the way anyone I know pronounces it. Not that anyone cares much about this sort of thing, I know…

  7. El Stinko says:

    It reminds me of Rob Sikoryack’s work, but Rob’s work is of a higher level.

  8. andyhavens says:

    Images are great. The meter is bad. Seuss’ stuff trips off the tongue, even as it twists. Also, ending a line in “of” is just odd. A better scan for these two pages might be:

    My late uncle left all his papers to me,
    though I had no notion of why that would be
    as I had zero interest in his brand of daft.
    But I looked through them anyway just for a laugh.

    Buried beneath all his dusty, old books
    I found a clay tablet with carvings that looked
    like strange, arcane symbols and puzzling glyphs
    as well as fey creatures from frightening myths.

    A fellow named Wilcox had crafted the block
    from nightmares that would have put mad men in shock.
    He hadn’t a choice but to exorcize care
    when carving the things that lived under his hair.

    [or something like that...]

  9. Jeb Adams says:

    Jerry Holkins at Penny Arcade crafted one of these a few years ago. The Last Christmas.

  10. Palomino says:

    Dr. Seuss has received too much attention on his “style” which this post defines as “seussian”. I wrote a poem in this style and it was easy. 

    It’s called Cacophony Type poetry/lyrical writing.  

    From: http://www.types-of-poetry.org.uk/09-cacophony.htm

    Cacophony is a technique which was used by the famous poet and author Lewis Carroll. Lewis Carroll makes use of cacophony in the poem ‘Jabberwocky’ by using an unpleasant spoken sound created by clashing consonants. The word cacophony originates from the Greek word meaning “bad sound”. The term in poetry refers to the use of words that combine sharp, harsh, hissing, or unmelodious sounds. 
     
    GRAB-A-MACHINE

    A bloat grabmachine rips with flair, 
    Goring my favorite tube leggings. 
    A Fleezing and grulk frown afair, 
    Gulps down my prized white things.

    At darkly it hammers and tonks,
    Gearcracking and gnashing my spunked.
    A deadwringer it tears and bonks,
    Pulps up my white things chunked.

    Enfrightened I pull it’s tongues spout,
    And scab-rake graygunked ingested.
    I scratch through it’s warm innerds-out,
    No white things found but regurgolested.

    A-year skareeches by rudely,
    The beastorff eyes my shins oogling.
    Sleering my blotched leg-bones lewdly,
    Missing mine white leg-a-thing.

  11. Palomino says:

    If you want to argue trisyllabic meter vs. my mention of  Cacophony, here’s this from Wikipedia: 

    (Redirect from trisyllabic meter) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foot_(prosody)The foot is a purely metrical unit; there is >>> no inherent relation to a word or phrase as a unit of meaning or syntax, <<<  though the interplay among these is an aspect of the individual poet's skill and artistry.

    Sounds like Cacophony. 

  12. Frank Diekman says:

    The real question is – what if Dr. Suess had written ‘The Human Centipede’?

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