The Voice of the Fire

By Alan Moore

Entry 7049


From: holdoffhunger [id: 1]


Untitled Anarchism The Voice of the Fire

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(1953 - )

Alan Moore (born 18 November 1953) is an English writer known primarily for his work in comic books including Watchmen, V for Vendetta, The Ballad of Halo Jones, Swamp Thing, Batman: The Killing Joke and From Hell. Regarded by some as the best comics writer in the English language, he is widely recognized among his peers and critics. He has occasionally used such pseudonyms as Curt Vile, Jill de Ray, and Translucia Baboon; also, reprints of some of his work have been credited to The Original Writer when Moore requested that his name be removed. (From:

(1960 - )

Neil Richard MacKinnon Gaiman (/ˈɡeɪmən/; born Neil Richard Gaiman, 10 November 1960) is an English author of short fiction, novels, comic books, graphic novels, nonfiction, audio theater, and films. His works include the comic book series The Sandman and novels Stardust, American Gods, Coraline, and The Graveyard Book. He has won numerous awards, including the Hugo, Nebula, and Bram Stoker awards, as well as the Newbery and Carnegie medals. He is the first author to win both the Newbery and the Carnegie medals for the same work, The Graveyard Book . In 2013, The Ocean at the End of the Lane was voted Book of the Year in the British National Book Awards. (From:


13 Chapters | 131,408 Words | 704,117 Characters

Introduction by Neil Gaiman One measures a circle starting anywhere, said Alan Moore, quoting Charles Fort, at the beginning of his exploration of Victorian society, From Hell. The circle here is temporal, and the circle is geographical. It is a circle made of black dogs and November fires, of dead feet and severed heads, of longing and loss and lust. It is a circle that will take you several miles and six thousand years. I am sitting in a room in the Netherlands, in an anachronistic Victorian castle, writing an introduction to a book called Voice of the Fire, by Alan Moore. It is not the best introduction to this book, of course. The best introduction is the final chapter of the book, written in a smoky room in November 1995 ... (From:
Hob’s Hog, 4000 BC A-hind of hill, ways off to sun-set-down, is sky come like as fire, and walk I up in way of this, all hard of breath, where is grass colding on I’s feet and wetting they. There is not grass on high of hill. There is but dirt, all in a round, that hill is as like to a no-hair man, he’s head. Stands I, and turn I’s face to wind for sniff, and yet is no sniff come for far ways off. I’s belly hurts, in middle of I. Belly-air come up in mouth, and lick of it is like to lick of no thing. Dry-up blood lump is come black on knee, and is with itch. Scratch I, where is yet more blood come. In bove of I is many sky-beasts, big and gray. Slow is they move, as they is with no strong i... (From:
The Cremation Fields, 2500 BC Floating downstream, away from me, it’s like a big white hand, dragging its fingers through frog-colored water, tufts of black hair growing there between them. ‘Do you go as far south as Bridge-in-Valley? We may walk together there for safety,’ says she. She is traveling to her father, who is dying, and she tells me that he is a cunning-man who comes one Summer long ago up track from Bridge-in-Valley, past the Great North Woods, far as the land’s edge, where the cold gray sea begins. He makes his children on a woman there, both boy and girl. Takes boy away with him and leaves the girl behind. All the long Winters pass. She does not see her father. He does not see her. Now ... (From:
In the Drownings, Post AD 43 The plaiting of the rushes and the cutting of the stilts. A hollow beak that spits out darts; its making and its use. The method of these things is like a voice inside that endlessly repeats its dull instructions. It’s been in me for so long that I no longer hear it. When I do, it soothes me in that I need think of nothing save this gray, unending list and thus at last may fall asleep with it upon my lips: The plaiting of the rushes and the cutting of the stilts. A hollow beak that spits out darts, its making and its use. Before I wade upstream towards the shallows, I look back at Salka and our children playing. Water beaded on her breast, she turns and holds me with her black-eyed gaze too l... (From:
The Head of Diocletian, Post AD 290 My teeth hurt. Standing here beyond the margins of the village there is only night; the hollow yawning of November wind across cold, furrowed earth; a dark that swallows utterly, so that I cannot tell where darkness ends and I begin. The tin-sharp soreness in my gums is all I have to tell me where I am, and I am almost glad of it out here among the black fields, where the damp wind cuts my cheek. I have been staring at this void so long my eyes are watering, unable to distinguish between sky and landscape; near and far. Worse yet, this is the second night I have subjected my complaining lungs to this ordeal, this vigil out here in the miserable chill before the winter comes. All for t... (From:
November Saints, AD 1064 With age, the act of waking has become a great confusion. I no longer know upon which decade of this life my eyes will open: lame and frost-burned by the old church gate or in my convent cell here, morning’s first sick blueness on the wall; blue of the dead. My cot is hard, that I may feel the bones that are inside me, restless and impatient to get out. Not long, they think. She’s old. Not long. Beneath the rough dusk sheet a chill aches in my bad leg’s starving marrow and I know it is November. Last night, on All Hallow’s Eve, I dreamed I was a man. Rain-blind, he rode the fierce night through upon a fever-horse towards Northampton here, though in my dream I thought of i... (From:
Limping to Jerusalem, Post AD 1100 Hard as new steel the sun cuts from a lard of cloud, although its light seems wearied by the effort. I am old, yet is this ceaseless and exhausting world here still. My piles nag, saddle-chafed, wherefore upon this showery morning I am filled with a choleric bile and have twice cuffed my squire. As we descend the street of Jews into the reek and clamor of the horse-fayer he falls back to ride behind me that I may not see the poison in his look. Ahead, my dogs run on among the market traders and their fly-chewed nags. With pink jaws wet and frilled like cunny, here and there they chop and snap upon an ankle or a fetlock, for the sport of it. The crowd fall back that I may pass, blunt-headed ge... (From:
Confessions of a Mask, AD 1607 It disappoints me to recount that lately I have found myself again afflicted with identity and so beset by a great pestilence of thoughts. Arid, inconsequential things, they rattle uselessly within the parchment seed-pod of this smirking mask I am become. Worse, they provoke a fearful itching at the rear interior of my cranium where, I fear, yet clings some withered clot of mind; gray husk of brittle sponge, wrung dry, crusted upon the inner shell like relic snots discovered on the pages of old books. I find if I contrive to let my skull tilt back and forth, as in a breeze, the iron point of my spike will scrape against the irritation and thus bring some measure of relief, though this does not di... (From:
Angel Language, AD 1618 I carry in my coat a snuff-box, though I’m not much in the habit now. Inside its lid there is a painting, done in miniature, of Greek or Roman ladies at their baths. They sit with thigh and buttock flat against wet tile and lean one on the other, nipple grazing shoulder, cheek to belly. Steam-secreted pearls are beaded on their spines, the hairs about each quim curled into little nooses by the damp. I think, perhaps, too oft on women for my years. The maddening petticoated presence of them, every sweep and swish a brush-stroke on the sweltering canvas of my thoughts. Their sag and swell. Their damp and occult hinges where they open up like wicked, rose-silk Bibles, or their smocks, rime-marbled un... (From:
Partners in Knitting, AD 1705 Inside the heads of owls and weasels there are jewels that will effect a cure for ague, for colic. Lightning is the spend of God that strikes an ash tree, where His seeds grow up, with rounded heads and slender tails, between the roots. A woman or a man may take these spendings in their mouth, and after have the Sight, so that they may put all their thoughts into a fire, to travel with its smoke towards the sky. Here they will meet with stork or heron that will bear them up until the Great Cathedral may be apprehended, with its perfect vaulted ceilings formed from naught but Law and Number. I have swallowed my own piss, and I have seen these things. Not yet an hour since, Mr Danks, the Minister of... (From:
The Sun Looks Pale Upon the Wall, AD 1841 Novr 17 Wednesday — Awoke in mine and Pattys house at Northborough felt very fearful yet cannot say why or what about — I call it house for it is not a home to me & cant be called one — in the morning wrote a letter off to Mr Reid in Alloa & asked if he would loan me some of his Scotch Papers having never had perusal of a Newspaper for some years I’d be very grateful for some entertaining incidents or literary News but if he will be good enough to send it me I do not know — in with my letter to him I enclosed a Song that is intended for Child Harold but I think it is not much of one and I may leave it out weather is very bad — all ‘vapor cloud... (From:
I Travel in Suspenders, AD 1931 I travel in suspenders. Selling ‘em, that is, not wearing ‘em. That always gets a laugh. You’ll often find a laugh will kick things off better than anything, whether you’re talking to a client, or young lady. Or for that matter a constable. Do you know, very often in the motor that carries me back and forth from Angel Lane to the assizes I’ll make some remark, you know. Just kidding them along, like, as you do. The other day we passed by this young woman in the street and honestly, the face on her, I’ve never seen one like it. I pointed her out to the young chap that I was handcuffed to. I said, ‘Ah well, there’s no sense looking at the mantel when the fi... (From:
Phipps’ Fire Escape, AD 1995 They’re buying it. The last words of the previous chapter, written in gray light, stand there upon the monitor’s dark stage, beneath the Help menu that’s lettered up on the proscenium arch. The cursor winks, a visible slow handclap in the black, deserted auditorium. The final act: no more impersonations. No more sleight-of-voice or period costume. The abandoned wigs and furs and frocks are swept away. Discarded masks and death-husk faces are returned to Property and hanging on their pegs. The grub-chewed skull of Francis Tresham dangles next to the wax imprint of John Clare, moon-browed and lantern-jawed. A cast of Nelly Shaw, the lips drawn back across her teeth in b... (From:


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