Letter to H. P. Lovecraft

From Clark Ashton Smith

[14] [c. 21 October 1930]

The Calaspian mountains,
in the Hyperborea of the future.

Dear E'ch-Pi-El:

I am marvellously pleased and enchanted by your new story, [1] which is a most worthy compere of "The Call of Cthulhu" and "The Dunwich Horror", and serves to constitute with them a monumental trilogy. You certainly make something very haunting out of the Vermont scenery and atmosphere; and the story itself, and the creatures from Yuggoth and their activities, are superlatively ingenious and imaginative. I am glad that Wright is paying you a fair price for the story. He would have deserved transportation to an even more disagreeable milieu than Yuggoth, if he had rejected it!

[. . .]

I am happy to know that the antemundane eidolon was so evocative of primordial fears and extra-cosmic wanderings. You should have seen the place where I found it! A place that was scarred and blasted ere the lifting of Lemuria, by the advent of the Old Ones themselves; and which will remain barren and blighted and seared till the falling of the last sun. It is so littered and strewn with ultra-terrestrial fragments, that only Tsathoggua himself can know what other eikons and figurines, and shattered bas-reliefs and writings of the Elder Script may lie concealed in those miles of unearthly rubble.

[. . .] The Jews [2] want some more "ekshun" in the first part of "The Red World", which they criticize as being "almost wholly descriptive". [. . .]

[. . .] I would vastly prefer to write tales of the supernatural and the purely fantastic like "Averoigne". [3] This pretense of being scientific gives me a pain. The mythology of science is not one that intrigues me very deeply.

[. . .]

As ever, most cordially,


  1. "The Whisperer in Darkness"
  2. A reference to the editors of Wonder Stories.
  3. "A Rendezvous in Averoigne" (Out of Space and Time (1942)).

From: Clark Ashton Smith: LETTERS TO H. P. LOVECRAFT, edited by and footnotes by Steve Behrends (July 1987) Necronomicon Press.

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