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Friday, December 13, 2013

"Laudate Dominum (for many voices)" by D. P. Watt

Appears in Shadows and Tall Trees (editor Michael Kelly).

Stephen Walker is a curmudgeon, a grumpy old man who requires of others what he does not of himself:  military service, no humming.  He is on vacation in Looe.  He plans to take in the wishing well and Mechanical Music Museum, but he can't find the well, and he stumbles on the museum where a large choir is practicing.  He lets himself in but cannot find the choir--a recording, no doubt.  The curator initially brushes off the visitor but becomes curious in Mr. Walker's voice....

An interesting tale with a horrific device at its core.  Mr. Walker seems to be just a random victim.  The beginning of the tale quotes Wittgenstein:
"How things are in the world is a matter of complete indifference for what is higher. God does not reveal himself in the world."
Interesting quote.  However, the tale is not as resonant because of it.  Why Walker?  No reason, except he's unpleasant.  He is, though, well characterized at the story's outset, and organically placed in his denouement.

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