Tuesday, March 10, 2020

The Sinister Decent from N to Z

The newest Sirenia Digest brings Caitlin R. Kiernan's conclusion to her Cerulean Alphabet, an intriguing set of vignettes covering the letters N through Z. Many of these vignettes may remind the reader of her Agents of Dreamland books as cops, investigations, and strange violent crime come up quite a bit.

The sequence begins with "N is for Nude" which, in its contemplation of a deeper kind of nudity than "unclothed", kind of reminded me of Mike Leigh's Naked but turns out to have more to do with weird murder than that film. Several of the stories deal with phenomena that covey a sense of amorphous threat, including "O is for Ogre", which is a very nice variation on the standard childhood nightmare about a monster in the closet. "R is for Red", meanwhile, makes respectable strides towards rivalling H.G. Wells' "The Red Room" in terms of horror and menace.

Twitter Sonnet #1336

The finless fish returned with questions asked.
Tormented tips advance the fingers west.
The fire sprites have ever entered masked.
The entry route was ranked as seventh best.
Afforded captains blot the check with ink
A stack of wood is books to open eyes.
A healthy rinse defrosts the frozen sink.
And all we sought and wanted, lots of pies.
Reversing steps announced the constant air.
In fleets of gloves the hands could pilot home.
Convenience starts behind the eyeless bear.
An ostrich lamp decides to slowly roam.
A puzzle sleeps, it's draped across a truck.
Entire skies reside inside the duck.

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