Police!!! - Robert William Chambers - ebook
Kategoria: Fantastyka i sci-fi Język: angielski Rok wydania: 1915

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About

FOREWORD
PREFACE

Part 1 - THE THIRD EYE

About Chambers:

Robert William Chambers (May 26, 1865 – December 16, 1933) was an American artist and writer. He was born in Brooklyn, New York, to William P. Chambers (1827 - 1911), a famous lawyer, and Caroline Chambers (née Boughton), a direct descendant of Roger Williams, the founder of Providence, Rhode Island. Robert's brother was Walter Boughton Chambers, the world famous architect. Robert was first educated at the the Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute,and then entered the Art Students' League at around the age of twenty, where the artist Charles Dana Gibson was his fellow student. Chambers studied at the École des Beaux-Arts, and at Académie Julian, in Paris from 1886 to 1893, and his work was displayed at the Salon as early as 1889. On his return to New York, he succeeded in selling his illustrations to Life, Truth, and Vogue magazines. Then, for reasons unclear, he devoted his time to writing, producing his first novel, In the Quarter (written in 1887 in Munich ) . His most famous, and perhaps most meritorious, effort is The King in Yellow, a collection of weird fiction short stories, connected by the theme of a book (to which the title refers) which drives those who read it insane. Chambers' fictitious drama The King in Yellow features in Karl Edward Wagner's story "The River of Night's Dreaming", while James Blish's story "More Light" purports to include much of the actual text of the play. Chambers later turned to writing romantic fiction to earn a living. According to some estimates, Chambers was one of the most successful literary careers of his period, his later novels selling well and a handful achieving best-seller status. Many of his works were also serialized in magazines. After 1924 he devoted himself solely to writing Historical fiction . On July 12, 1898, he married Elsa Vaughn Moller (1882-1939). They had a son, Robert Edward Stuart Chambers (later calling himself Robert Husted Chambers) who also gained some fame as an author. H. P. Lovecraft said of him in a letter to Clark Ashton Smith, "Chambers is like Rupert Hughes and a few other fallen Titans - equipped with the right brains and education but wholly out of the habit of using them." Frederic Taber Cooper commented, "So much of Chambers's work exasperates, because we feel that he might so easily have made it better." He died in New York on December 16th 1933. A critical essay on Chambers' work appears in S. T. Joshi's book The Evolution of the Weird Tale (2004). Source: Wikipedia

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All the pretty things you say, All the pretty things you do In your own delightful way Make me fall in love with you, Turning Autumn into May.

Every day is twice as gay Just because of you, Louise! Which is going some, you say? In my dull, pedantic way I am fashioning my lay Just because I want to please.

Just because the things you say, Just because the things you do In your clever, charming way Make me fall in love with you. That is all, my dear, to-day.

R.W.C.


FOREWORD

Give me no gold nor palaces Nor quarts of gems in chalices Nor mention me in Who is Who I'd rather roam abroad with you Investigating sky and land, Volcanoes, lakes, and glacial sand I'd rather climb with all my legs To find a nest of speckled eggs, Or watch the spotted spider spin Or see a serpent shed its skin! Give me no star-and-garter blue! I'd rather roam around with you.

Flatten me not with flattery! Walk with me to the Battery, And see in glassy tanks the seals, The sturgeons, flounders, smelt and eels Disport themselves in ichthyic curves— And when it gets upon our nerves Then, while our wabbling taxi honks I'll tell you all about the Bronx, Where captive wild things mope and stare Through grills of steel that bar each lair Doomed to imprisonment for life— And you may go and take your wife.

Come to the Park[1] with me; I'll show you crass stupidity Which sentences the hawk and fox To inactivity, and locks The door of freedom on the lynx Where puma pines and eagle stinks. Never a slaver's fetid hold Has held the misery untold That crowds the great cats' kennels where Their vacant eyes glare blank despair Half crazed by sloth, half dazed by fear All day, all night, year after year.

To the swift, clean things that cleave the air To the swift, clean things that cleave the sea To the swift, clean things that brave and dare Forest and peak and prairie free, A cage to craze and stifle and stun And a fat man feeding a penny bun And a she-one giggling, "Ain't it grand!" As she drags a dirty-nosed brat by the hand.


PREFACE

On a beautiful day in spring as I was running as hard as I could run pursued by the New York police and a number of excited citizens, my mind, which becomes brilliantly active under physical exhilaration, began to work busily.

I thought about all sorts of things: I thought about hard times and financial depression and about our great President who is in a class all alone with himself and soon to become extinct; I thought about art and why there isn't any when it's talked about; I thought of macro-lepidoptera, of metagrammatism, monoliths, manicures, and monsoons.

And all the time I was running as fast as I could run; and the faster I ran the more things I thought about until my terrific pace set my brain whizzing like a wheel.

I felt no remorse at having published these memoirs of my life—which was why the police and populace were pursuing me, maddened to frenzy by the fearless revelation of mighty scientific truths in this little volume you are about to attempt to read. Ubicumque ars ostentatur, veritas abesse videtur!

I thought about it clearly, calmly, concisely as I fled. The maddened shouts of the prejudiced populace did not disturb me. Around and around the Metropolitan Museum of Art I ran; the inmates of that institution came out to watch me and they knew at a glance that I was one of them for they set up a clamor like a bunch of decoy ducks when one of their wild comrades comes whirling by.

"Police! Police!" they shouted; but I went careering on uptown, afraid only that the park squirrels might club together to corner me. There are corners in grain. Why not in—but let that pass.

I took the park wall in front of the great Mr. Carnegie's cottage at a single bound. He stood on his terrace and shouted, "Police!" He was quite logical.

The Equal Franchise Society was having a May party in the park near the Harlem Mere. They had chosen the Honorable William Jennings Bryan as Queen of the May. He wore low congress-gaiters and white socks; he was walking under a canopy, crowned with paper flowers, his hair curled over his coat collar, the tips of his fingers were suavely joined over his abdomen.

The moment he caught sight of me he shouted, "Police!"

He was right. The cabinet lacked only me.

And I might have consented to tarry—might have allowed myself to be apprehended for political purposes, had not a nobler, holier, more imperative duty urged me northward still.

Though all Bloomingdale shouted, "Stop him!" and all Matteawan yelled, "Police!" I should not have consented to pause. Even the quackitudinous recognition spontaneously offered by the Metropolitan Museum had not been sufficient to decoy me to my fellows.

I knew, of course, that I could find a sanctuary and a welcome in many places—in almost any sectarian edifice, any club, any newspaper office, any of the great publishers', any school, any museum; I knew that I would be welcomed at Columbia University, at the annex to the Hall of Fame, in the Bishop's Palace on Morningside Heights—there were many places all ready to receive, understand and honour me.

For a sufficiently crippled intellect, for a still-born brain, for the intellectually aborted, there is always a place on some editorial, sectarian, or educational staff.

Try It!

But I had other ideas as I galloped northward. The voiceless summons of the most jealous of mistresses was making siren music in my ears. That coquettish jade, Science, was calling me by wireless, and I was responding with both legs.

And so, at last, I arrived at the Bronx Park and dashed into the Administration Building where everybody rose and cheered me to the echo.

I was at home at last, unterrified, undismayed, and ready again as always to dedicate my life to the service of Truth and to every caprice and whim of my immortal mistress, Science. But I don't want to marry her.

Magna est veritas! Sed major et longinquo reverentia.


Being a few deathless truths concerning several mysteries recently and scientifically unravelled by a modest servant of Science.


Part 1
THE THIRD EYE