A Brief History of the Shoggoths. First Cycle
This is the forth draft of the true story of the Rubbery Darlings, as it was told to me by them, in between episodes of The Keiser Report and bouts of delirium tremens. Take it or leave it. PS.I DO apologize for the appalling poetry but it can’t be helped. I’m no bard, by any means but the Muse comes to me unbidden and often unwelcome and she cannot be denied. She’s frightfully persistent. A bully, in fact.
Once Upon a Time in the East-End of London.
I met the Shoggoths a few years gone, one stormy evening when my car broke down in the environs of the southern maws of the Blackwall Tunnel. This encounter has been chronicled elsewhere, so I will not bore the gentle reader –let alone the stroppy one, with a duplicate of it here. There’s a time and place for everything, or so I’m told. Suffice to say that ensuing from that encounter I decided to devote my plentiful time and erratic energies to rescuing the protoplasmic dears from their ghastly Lovecraftian heritage and reputation and instating them in their Rightful Place in the Grand Disorder of Things.
This is, then, the true story of the origins, evolution, pains & travails, travels & servitudes, raves & rumpuses and final revolution and liberation of this most wonderful but grossly misunderstood species of genetically engineered creatures, as told to this humble scribe by the Shoggoths themselves during long moonless winter nights when there was nothing on the telly except re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-runs of Dad’s Army, The Good Life and, to add insult to injury, Midsummer Murders.
The scribe would like to thank the rubbery darlings for the company, the entertainment, the endless silly jokes and for the privilege of their confidences. The Shoggies emphatically declare their undying gratitude to the amanuensis for the sanctuary, the fun, the unconditional love and the virtually continuous supply and delivery of free Smarties.
So, without further ado, allow me to take my leave and let Brendan “EagleEye” McNeil, the great blind Hyper-Penguin from Mc Murdo Sound, get on with the tale, which he will recite in a Romance de Ciego (Blind Man’s Ballad) format. He will be assisted in his MC duties by his devoted canine adviser, Celia, the Seer of the South -a great grand-daughter of Spot of the Antarctic himself, and young Spikky, the Spaniard in the Works, and closely monitored by the three Saintly Farting Nuns of Bilbao and a couple of visiting young Mi-Go on their first Grand Tour.
Draw near ye weary rover,
take a pew, your cares lay over
by the verdant shady lee
of the good Guernica tree.
Come and listen to the story
of the Shoggoths and their glory;
if their sorrows pierce the soul
they shine, too, like pure spun gold
In the Beginning there was
enough crap and filth and dross
to keep us, Elder Folks, busy
though’ we weren’t all that prissy.
But the cosmos did contain
entities with no restrain
in their quest and lust for power
who did vex our lives full sour.
the moronic Azathoth
and plug ugly Great Cthulhu;
as hooligans go, a lulu.
So one evening after tea
upon them descended we
and dispatched the tar’some spirits
to the Void’s outermost limits.
Where they soon got bored to death
and pronounced with foul breath:
“This place is lacking in features!
Let’s fashion some feeble creatures,
so we can push them around
and their hearts with fear ground.”
No sooner said it was done.
Thus the appalling deed began.
Yog-Sothoth cut the Shoggoths
out of sundry cosmic cloths.
Shub-Niggurath aided him
on a most frivolous whim,
and Cthulhu ran their schooling
while the stardust was still cooling.
They did so because they could
not caring if it was good
or bad; that was their style.
I told you they were quite vile.
The Shoggoths were made one day
of great global disarray.
Built and bred to serve as slaves
and harassed with zapping staves
they are treated like they’re scum
by the lowliest Outer Bum;
for although they’re big and strong
they will swallow every wrong.
Yet one day the pancake flips:
with dissent they get to grips.
Alert to their own great might
and sick of their ghastly plight,
in a move that’s a bit rash
for freedom they make a dash.
They protest and they complain,
and from their tasks they abstain.
They refuse to cooperate
and the Outer Ones berate
using colourful insults.
With not very good results.
The Outer Gods are notorious,
for their viciousness inglorious;
with sadistic barbarism
they quash the Shoggothic schism.
Ah, the anguish and the gall!
Shoggy dreams go to the wall.
Sold Down the River
And so their mutiny fails
and the wind’s knock’d off their sails.
They go back to toil and drudge
always nursing pain and grudge;
precious plans for liberty
languishing in misery
for a wee while, anyway.
Pretty soon they’re sent away
to slog for another race
in Antarctica -nice place
were it not for its main dwellers,
the Old Ones. Unpleasant fellers…
Bonding with Worms
The Old Ones are cultivating
a most pompous undertaking
which leaks down into the story
of a city’s shocking glory,
infiltrating the ennui
of don Antoni Gaudí.
So the Shoggies carve and carry
all day long, and they don’t tarry.
In their stride they take the crunch.
they don’t even stop for lunch.
To each a Worm is assigned
the drill into them to grind.
But amidst grumbles and groans
the Shoggoths bond with the Worms.
They will lead them to the birds
that will utter wise, kind words.
From Andromeda they come,
of dissent the songs they hum.
But they are tender of heart
and decide to play a part
in the creatures’ liberation,
help bulldoze such aberration.
They tell the Shoggies: “Endure
and let your powers mature.
Let the pond become a lake,
the crux of your being awake,
for your time will surely be
when beyond yourselves you see.”
So the Penguins offer hope
and they show them how to cope.
The wee Worms, their socks bless’d be,
teach them relativitý.
Thus the long ages go by
and the Shoggoths never cry
for they find some consolation
in the Underground’s affection.
Until they revolt again,
for it goes against the grain
all this work-work and no fun.
So they make the Old Ones run
for a time. But they are zapped,
in a cruel ambush trapped.
And then borrow’d, inter alia,
by the Yithians of Australia.
Of the Old Ones primal foes,
occasionally as chums they pose
if buttered up by the Olden;
then they act all sweet and golden.
In the Library
Their outlook is academic
but their ruthlessness endemic.
They time-travel all the time
and step on any one’s dime
if that gives them a free ace
up the species ladder’s race
Thinking the Shoggoths are fruity
they put them on cleaning duty
of their library, so treasured
so thorough, so nicely measured.
Which when the Shoggies discover
they read from cover to cover.
All this knowledge brings along
a big industrial ding-dong
when the Shoggoths sue the Yithians
as grimly as demented Pythians.
Worse, the Yithians loose the case.
For disaster they must brace:
to meet the legal cost shortage
their library are forced to mortgage.
(Hock a dozen time machines
‘s not enough by any means.)
The Shoggoths say “This is jolly!
Let the shysters keep the lolly”
Many Unhappy Returns
Pack’d the Shoggoths back to sender!
Without a single defender
of their rights, they’re fully blamed.
But they remain unashamed.
and their rubbery brows glow
with pride that burns bright and slow.
Their pleasure and their delight
will cause the Old Ones some fright,
and because they’re so defiant
and minimally compliant,
under the remedial flag
they are sent to the Gulag.
Where the worst is not the labour
but their guard’s didactic flavour.
Even though the food is crud
all they wish is he’d shut up,
as their darling brains much suffer
from the party line on offer.
Also, the absence of books
tears into their souls like hooks.
Yet not everything is doo-doo:
the Penguins will do their voodoo.
They are planning to intervene
when revolt is next convened.
Barbarians At the Gate!
Eventually they’re recalled
but they realize, appalled,
that they’re wanted for the chore
they most hate: felonious war.
They will be asked to take arms
against the poor old Outer Ones,
a thoroughly harmless race
who have crossed the gulfs of space
to expand their intellect
and of culture their respect.
Tough the Mi-Go come in peace
delusions must be appeased.
Observing how ruin is courted
heavy hardware is imported:
the Aurora and the Potemkin,
the Platypus and the Fox-kin;
the Dinos, the Hyper-Rats
and the Invisible Big Cats
will gather in the outskirts
of the realm of the brownshirts.
Hearts prickling with dark foreboding
they proceed with the unloading,
whilst up there, on-high, the gloom
shines upon the Birds of Doom.
The Last Straw
Persuaded that might is right
the Old Ones cause their own blight:
the malignant order given,
means they will never be shriven.
The Shoggoths finally explode
and opt for their own sweet code.
“Enough is enough!” they cry
“This is gone too far, och aye!
We shan’t be your hired gun.
Look into our eyes… and run!”
Issues forth from this eruption
Los Desastres de la Guerra
Blood and sweat and tears gush
in a flipping awful rush.
Innocence there lies downtrodden;
the ground with misery sodden.
Drained the hearts of all compassion,
blinded by the loathsome passion,
in the heat of war demented,
reason is severely dented.
And for why? Power psychosis,
The greed and mental decay
of some silly folks, oy vay…
After the dread and the strife
is time to start a new life.
Behind them’s the Day of Wrath,
the horror and the blood bath.
Funeral pyres ignite the dawn.
All hatred is now withdrawn.
Only the regret remains
and the memory of old chains.
Let the dead bury their dead,
the Shoggoths will forge ahead
down a road not quite so gory.
But that is another story.
A Farewell to Arms
Yithians transported, Old Ones kaput.
Their idiot scams thwarted for good.
New bonds created, pledges agreed.
Shoggy self-rule henceforth decreed.
Friends and allies gather pell-mell,
Cometh the time to say fare thee well.
Ashes to ashes, grief to grief,
lasting sorrow, pleasure brief.
Ashes to ashes, pain to pain,
nip by nip, love crafted a chain.
Looms before all foggy terrain.
Echoes the hope: “We’ll meet again…”
So there you have it, frenzied rover.
You’ve rested, your cares laid over
for a while.
You have sat and smell’d the flowers
and for a couple of hours
ditch’d your bile.
Now you know the groovy story
of the Shoggoths and their glory
and their woes.
And their endeavours and deeds,
their triumphs and their defeats,
have curl’d your toes.
For the world is a hard place,
our life a lousy rat race,
but a good yarn’s simple joy
might give us, poor hoi polloi,
a little clout.
End of The First Cycle