In this weeks episode I will be discussing Nyarlathotep, a prose poem by H.P. Lovecraft. It is a piece of weird fiction based around Nyarlathotep, the Crawling Chaos who is a very popular Cthulhu Mythos deity. Lovecraft first wrote the story in 1920 and it was published that same year in the United Amateur.
Nyarlothotep is a Cthulhu Mythos deity that walks among us and has done so for years, although he has done so in many forms. In this original prose poem he is depicted as a traveling showman visiting a city. Needless to say the city and its people will not be the same. An audio reading courtesy of Archive.org is included in the episode.
In this weeks episode I will be discussing A Night in Malnéant by Clark Ashton Smith. It’s a short story that was first published in June 1933, in a collection titled “The Double Shadow and Other Fantasties”, which Smith published himself. The story would later be reprinted in the September 1939 issue of Weird Tales. This is not part of any particular cycle within Smith’s body of work, it is a stand alone Weird Fantasy story. It deals with a nameless narrator who wanders into the gothic city of Malneant and spends an unusual mist shrouded night there as his past appears to catch up with him.
It’s a pretty interesting story and is wonderfully told. Thanks to the generosity of Will Hart, aka CtulhuWho1, I have included a recording of noted fantasy writer Fritz Leiber reading the story from the 3rd World Fantasy Convention on October 29, 1977 in Los Angeles, California, where Clark Ashton Smith was the theme. Will was in attendance for the reading and thanks to him it will last forever. Be sure to check out Will’s site and Flickr page for a ton of great audio and visual goodness when it comes to classic dark fantasy tales. His site is located at cthulhuwho1.com. I’ll put links to both his site and flickr page in the show notes.