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Old 09-18-2008   #41
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

The dreams promised me that they would go alphabetical by Christmas.

Each time I had them, they were in random order. No rhyme nor reason to them. Even the subject matters didn't follow on, but became the ultimate non-sequiturs to each other, going in all directions through various tangents, repetitions and, at best, deja-vu's. I lost patience with them and threatened not to go to sleep. They, in turn, threatened to introduce me to a monster far more fearful than I could possibly imagine when I eventually did go to sleep, as I must.

As indeed I must have done.

Still, they had promised to go alphabetical by Christmas, which would at least give me some handle on the recurring dreams that constitute a lifetime.

But what letter of the alphabet does a dreamer (somebody sufficiently monstrous to be utterly unrecognisable and indescribable and unmentionable and, even, undreamable) begin with?
D. F. Lewis - "Dreams of a Dreamer"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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Old 09-18-2008   #42
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

If you can't take responsibility for your own dream, it's a poorer world for that.
D. F. Lewis - "Dreamache"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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Old 09-19-2008   #43
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

"A paralysis had seized them, that state of soul known to those who dwell on the highest plane of madness, aristocrats of insanity whose nightmares confront them on either side of sleep. Soon enough the wrenching effect of this psychic immobility became far less tolerable than the prospect of simply giving up and staying in the town. Such was the case with at least one of these cataleptic puppets, a sticklike woman who said, 'We have no choice. He has stayed in his house.' Then another voice among them shouted, 'He has stayed too long.'"
Thomas Ligotti - "The Tsalal"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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Old 09-20-2008   #44
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

"Someone was now shaking him, and he awoke. It was the dead of night. Outside the window a bright crescent moon was fixed in the blackness. Within the room were two guards and a hooded figure holding a lamp. One of the guards pinned the dreamer to the floor, while the other reached underneath his ragged shirt, relieving him of a hidden weapon he had recently formed out of a fragment from one of the stone walls in the tower room. 'Don't worry,' the guard said, 'we've been watching you.' Then the hooded figure waved the lamp toward the doorway and the prisoner was carried out, his feet dragging over the dark stones of the floor.

From the room in the tower they descended - by means of countless stone staircases and long, torchlit passages - to the deepest part of the castle far underground. This area was a complex of vast chambers, each outfitted from its cold, earthen floor to its lofty, almost indiscernible ceiling with a formidable array of devices. In addition to the incessant echoes of an icy seepage dripping from above, the only other distinguishable sound was the creaking of this incredible system of machinery, with the refrain now and then of an open-mouthed groan.

His body was put in harness and hoisted so that the tips of his toes barely grazed the floor. The hooded figure, through a sequence of signals, directed the proceedings. During a lull in his agony, the prisoner once again tried to explain to his persecutors their error - that he was not who they thought he was, that he was suffering another man's punishment.

'Are you certain of that?' asked the hooded figure, speaking in an almost kindly tone of voice which he had never used before.

At these words a look of profound confusion appeared on the prisoner's face, one quite distinct from previous expressions of mere physical torment. And although no new manipulations had been employed, his entire body became grotesquely arched in agony as he emitted a single unbroken scream before collapsing into unconsciousness.

'Waken him,' ordered the hooded figure.

They tried, but his body still hung motionless from the ropes, hunched and twisting in its harness. He had already been revived for the last time, and his dreams of measurements and precise dimensions would no longer be disturbed, lost as they now were in a formless nonsense of nothingness."
Thomas Ligotti - "Salvation by Doom"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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Old 09-20-2008   #45
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

"But there are still those dreams which are waiting for others to come along whose terms and conditions will cancel them out. These are the leftover dreams, our dark days, which have yet to fall victim to mathematics, and they are the only ones that count for anything. And it is the same with our waking days. Only a few of those escape nullification by contradiction, that process of cancellation which is going on all the time.

In any case, neither dreams nor days ever survive long before their counterparts annihilate them. It is quite possible that, in our last moments, there will be nothing left which we might look back on as a lifetime.

But will this nothingness itself endure, or will it too be canceled out by some inviolable and unsuspected form of being, terminating at last in a kind of double oblivion?"
Thomas Ligotti - "The Interminable Equation"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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Old 09-20-2008   #46
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

"In the morning he drifted pale from his home, another night exacted from him by disfigured masters, a little more of himself sliding into the black mirror of dreams. At first he would regain some of his losses of the previous night, but less of his own life was being returned to his possession. Their presence was now with him, an invisible mist surrounding him and distorting his senses. The streets he walked seemed to slant beneath his feet; a scene in the distance would be twisted out of all earthly shape, suggesting the remote latitudes of nightmare. Voices whispered to him from the depths of stairwells and the far corners of hallways. Somehow the raveling clouds carried a charnel odor which pursued him back to the door of his home and into his sleep.

And into the dreams he fell, helplessly skittering down slanted streets, tumbling down stairwells, caught in a mesh of moldering clouds. Then the faces began to float above him, sharp fingers reaching into his flesh. He screamed himself awake. But even in the darkness they seemed to linger."
Thomas Ligotti - "The Demon Man"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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Old 09-20-2008   #47
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

"Preceding the moment of revivification there may be a sudden darkness which embraces the dead city, and within the darkness great flashes of light create the appearance that things are in motion. There may only be a frail mist which drifts among the ruins and slithers into their every fracture. Or there may be nothing at all, or nothing that may be witnessed. Yet all the same it will happen that something begins to stir where, for so long, everything had been at rest. Then it will seem that skeletons have broken the silence with moans of life and the stones themselves have emerged from sleep. And other things join in the awakening, as old dreams sink into the ocean of unmemory and the ruins are recreated in a new semblance.

The source of this resurrection-to-come may remain unknown, its purposes secreted in the remotest parts of the creation. Yet no force ever withstands the way of this mysterious maker of new worlds, just as no world is ever allowed to endure in its greatness. For nothing is allowed a face but that it may be only a mask without a constant soul; nothing is allowed a mask but that it may wither and finally be torn from its face. And upon these truths will all things thrive in the great chains of that strange and endless dream, and flourish - let it be said - in the mysterious atmosphere of ruination.

For wherever mystery serves as a foundation, only ruins may be erected. There, every structure is secretly ravaged as it rises, for beneath lie the wavering substrata and a strange life that will not share itself with any other. Yet more strangely, neither will it long tolerate the dignity of a picturesque decay, and thus is forever creeping into the desolate ruins of certain cities to violate their sleep. Then will the wreckage be resurrected in new shapes, the scenery pulled up on another stage, lively faces painted upon dead players, their twisted limbs restrung with wires.

But mystery itself remains guarded, its life sealed far away from its creation. And in a world that merely seems to possess a life of its own, figures parade in a state of terror which is immortal, unchanging, and which endures, through all the phases of a fateful ordeal, as their only inviolable birthright."
Thomas Ligotti - "The Mocking Mystery"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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Old 09-21-2008   #48
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

"In those nights of dreaming, all things were subject to forces that knew nothing of law or reason, and nothing possessed its own nature or essence but was only a mask upon the face of absolute darkness, a blackness no one had ever seen.

Even as a child he realized that his dreams did not follow the creation taught to him by his father and by that book. It was another creation he pursued, a counter-creation, and the books on the shelves of his father's library could not reveal to him what he desired to know of this other genesis. While denying it to his father, and often to himself, he dreamed of reading the book that was truly forbidden, the scripture of a deadly creation, one that would tell the tale of the universe in its purest sense.

But where could he find such a book? On what shelf of what library would it appear before his eyes? Would he recognize it when fortune allowed it to fall into his hands? Over time he became certain he would know the book, so often did he dream of it. For in the most unlikely visions he found himself in possession of the book, as though it belonged to him as a legacy. But while he held the book in dreams, and even saw its words with miraculous clarity, he could not comprehend the substance of a script whose meaning seemed to dissolve into nonsense. Never was he granted in these dreams an understanding of what the book had to tell him. Only as the most obscure and strangest sensations did it communicate with his mind, only as a kind of presence that invaded and possessed his sleep. On waking, all that remained was a euphoric terror. And it was then that objects around him would begin their transformations, for his soul had been made lawless by dreams and his mind was filled with the words of the wrong book."
Thomas Ligotti - "The Tsalal"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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Old 09-21-2008   #49
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

"Adjacent to the edge of town, the field allowed full view of itself from so many of our windows. It lay spacious beyond tilting fence-posts and under a bright round moon, uncluttered save for the peaked silhouettes of corn shocks and a manlike shape that stood fixed in the nocturnal solitude. The head of the figure was slumped forward, as if a grotesque slumber had overtaken its straw-stuffed body, and the arms were slackly extended in a way that suggested some incredible gesture toward flight. For a moment it seemed to be an insistent wind which was flapping those patched-up overalls and fluttering the worn flannel of those shirt sleeves; and it would seem a forceful wind indeed which caused that stitched-up head to nod in its dreams. But nothing else joined in such movements: the withered leaves of the cornstalks were stiff and unstirring, the trees of the distant woods were in a lull against the clear night. Only one thing appeared to be living where the moonlight spread across that dead field. And there were some who claimed that the scarecrow actually raised its arms and its empty face to the sky, as though declaring itself to the heavens, while others thought that its legs kicked wildly, like those of a man who is hanged, and that they kept on kicking for the longest time before the thing collapsed and lay quiet. Many of us, we discovered, had been nudged from our beds that night, called as witnesses to this obscure spectacle. Afterward, the sight we had seen, whatever we believed its reason, would not rest within us but snatched at the edges of our sleep until morning."
Thomas Ligotti - "The Shadow at the Bottom of the World"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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Old 09-21-2008   #50
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Re: Dream Passage of the Day

"Was it not some deranged poet who began to eat truth as one partakes of a strange and perhaps deadly food? Little nibbles to start off, tiny nips which cause the tongue to tingle, a weird but not yet unpleasant sensation. He continues munching, full-grown mouthfuls now. But already the meal is overwhelming in its oddity, an experience that is unreal yet hellishly tangible. Unfortunately the deranged poet has also learned that he must keep eating away if he doesn't want to end up a permanent resident of one of those intolerably eerie dreams his feast has induced. He wanders from dream to dream, hoping to find a way out of this maze of psychic indigestion he has found within."
Thomas Ligotti - "The Deranged Poet"

"What does it mean to be alive except to court disaster and suffering at every moment?"

Tibet: Carnivals?
Ligotti: Ceremonies for initiating children into the cult of the sinister.
Tibet: Gas stations?
Ligotti: Nothing to say about gas stations as such, although I've always responded to the smell of gasoline as if it were a kind of perfume.
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