13 October 2008
“Whisperer in the Darkness”
“I did not retire Saturday night, but sat up thinking of the shadows and marvels behind the letter I had received. My mind aching from the quick succession of monstrous conceptions it had been forced to confront during the last four months, worked upon this starling new material in a cycle of doubt and acceptance which repeated most of the steps experienced in facing the earlier wonders; till long before dawn a burning interest and curiosity had begun to replace the original storm of perplexity and uneasiness. Mad or sane, metamorphosed or merely relieved, the chances were that Akeley had actually encountered some stupendous change of perspective in his hazardous research; some change at once diminishing his danger – real or fancied – and opening dizzy new vistas of cosmic and superhuman knowledge. My own zeal for the unknown flared up to meet his, and I felt myself touched by the contagion of the morbid barrier-breaking. To shake off the maddening and wearying limitations of time and space and natural law – to be linked with the vast outside – to come close to the knighted and abysmal secrets of the infinite and the ultimate – surely such a thing was worth the risk of one’s life, soul, and sanity! And Akeley had said there was no longer any peril – he had invited me to visit him instead of warning me away as before. I tingled at the thought of what he might now have to tell me – there was an almost paralyzing fascination in the thought of sitting in that lonely and lately beleaguered farmhouse with a man who had talked with actual emissaries from outer space; sitting there with the terrible record and the pile of letters in which Akeley had summarized his earlier conclusions,” (Lovecraft 450).
This passage which was taken from the short story “Whisperer in the Darkness” by H.P. Lovecraft efficiently emphasizes some of the crucial questions and issues surrounding this...