Monday, February 05, 2007

On The Trail of The Black Swamp of Chepachet: Part 1

Muriel Eddy (1945) declared that CM Eddy and HP Lovecraft went in search of a weird swamp. We will explore that in a series of several posts.

Lovecraft Visits Chepachet

In 1923 H. P. Lovecraft made a day trip to Glocester, stopping briefly at Chepachet, in search of material for his stories. He apparently was much impressed by what he saw ...

"Here, surely, is the inmost spirit of antient New England; that vivid Mother Earth which our forefathers, and the Indian savages before them, knew and understood so well.

"Chepachet itself ... is a veritable poem - a study in antient New England village atmosphere, with its deep, grass bordered gorge, its venerable bridge, and its picturesque centuried houses."

Continuing west towards Reynolds Road (Route 94), he came upon a scene so lovely he was compelled to write:

"Far as the Eye can see,behold outspread
The serried Hills that own no Traveller's Tread;
Dome beyond Dome,and on each flaming side
The hanging Forests in their virgin Pride.

Here dips a Vale,and here a Mead extends,
Whilst thro' the piny Strath a brooklet bends:
Yon farther Slopesto violet AEther fade,
And sunset Splendorgilds the nearer Glade:

Rude Walls of Stonecin pleasing Zig-zag run
Where well-plac'd Treessalute the parting Sun;
Vext with the Artsthat puny men proclaim,
Nature speaks once,and puts them all to Shame!"

"Selected Letters"H. P. Lovecraft
November 4, 1923

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