Penning down endorsements for literary linchpins is quite a Sisyphean task to fare. But then, if it is H.P. Lovecraft’s oeuvre, one feels drawn towards the story so much that the elusive challenge seems to evoke a different thrill altogether. This review is going to be an endorsement for one of his most extolled works, “Memory”.
Howard Philips Lovecraft, whose writing finesse was never discerned or lauded while he was alive, and he received posthumous fame after he died putting up a redoubtable fight with cancer. One of his most notable opus was a short story that goes by the name of “Memory”. Memory was an allusion to the hodiernal earth which marks the presence of congestion in modern day world.
Scribed in the year 1919 and published in 1923, this story was premised in the valley of Nis. This story comprises just two characters. One of them is the Genie and the other one is the Daemon.
The first thing which rivets readers towards the works of Lovecraft is his concinnity. He cleaves to archaic English and very minutely describes each and every detail. The most magical part about it is that he makes the ambience of the story extremely real. It feels as if he himself has had that experience personally and is simply narrating it while standing amidst that Stygian cesspool (read it for him, a utopia).
The story witnesses a tête-à-tête between two phantasmic creatures – a genie and a daemon who are not acclimated to the modernised world, and are inquiring each other about the changes which has swept athwart the entire world. The genie would like to know what has happened to the stone which were placed near the river Than. The genie is also inquiring the daemon about that singular one who has placed those stones. Haplessly the daemon is bereft of any answers. He very blatantly gave in to oblivion. He finally returns to his own contemplation of the ape which environs the river Than.
This story is an allusion to the world of the modern day. Today’s world very seldom knows about its past heritage. Embodied by the daemon’s oblivion, this story has spoken volumes about the world’s negligence towards its heritage. Any ancient edifices are disparaged under the facade of time. People have got no time to gauge mother nature as the world has become a cut and run race to the very brim.
The characters flag ancient magical creatures who are now not even talked about. They do not even exist in today’s fairy tales. Silence is now an elusive virtue in today’s world.
Lovecraft has very neatly placed every iota of detail. He hasn’t stretched the story, kept it compact and ended it on an extremely taciturn note, thereby giving the audience all the time they need to imbibe the magnitude of such a deep story.