modern horror

When you look in the dead artist’s garden pond now, all you see is some kind of slimy, feathery-looking weed moving to and fro in the cloudy water. It might be growing on something, some shape you can’t quite bring to mind. Overseeing it from a short plinth of home-made concrete is a ten-inch figure without head or legs but with distinct male genitals. This seems to sum things up. The tiles at the rim of the pool have been fitted by amateurs–the effect is of a mouldy bathroom in a Spanish holiday villa. All over the walled garden broken or partial bodies abound. Women are reduced to loins and buttocks. Heads of both sexes rest on the tops of walls. An aesthetic of careful disarrangement–of pretended disarrangement–dissimulates this site of suppressed rage and murder, limbs ripped off as a result of acts with no aesthetic at all.

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Filed under crime, ghosts

10 responses to “modern horror

  1. lara

    Cool. I like that.

  2. Me too. Careful disarrangement is always transparent, isn’t it. Hard to build a good ruin.

  3. Sounds like Kurtz’s station. The horror! indeed.

  4. uzwi

    Thanx guys.

    Careful disarrangement is always transparent, isn’t it. Hard to build a good ruin.

    Indeed. But in that garden I really felt that the care of the disarrangement (the “art” of it) barely dissembled some genuine fury of dismemberment. I don’t know why. Proper ghost story stuff.

  5. This could almost be read as the course of the horror story over the last hundred years condensed down to a paragraph; from antique to modern. It begins pleasantly eerie and suggestive; by the end it is graphic and disturbing and the horror is too real to be even remotely pleasant.

  6. uzwi

    Thanx gElm.

    >>by the end it is graphic and disturbing and the horror too real to be even remotely pleasant.

    You might add: & nothing has actually happened. For me the zen of horror is to express it not as direct content but as a potential inside other content. Here it’s expressed inside a value judgement about the person who made the garden. It could be passed off as that.

  7. Martin

    You wonder: was all this a memorial, or a rehearsal?

    Good job you didn’t see what they did to the garden gnomes, too.

  8. Mr Evans

    Nice. It’s like being confronted by a terrible truth or insight that’s snuck up on you unawares – you ask yourself: “Has that always been there, or is it just the way I’m looking at it?”

    …And it knocks the shit outta Mirbeau’s Garden any day of the week!

  9. Brendan

    After re-reading this, I’d like to formally request that you do a list of ‘good horror’ or something like that. Purely selfish, as I need to continue my education, but I think it makes sense after sci-fi and fantasy. And trilogies tend to be the most popular, don’t they?

  10. uzwi

    Hi Brendan. I was thinking of that.