REH Word of the Week: silian Essay

noun1. slimy reptiles that inhabit the Sea of Korus[origin: creatures created by author, Edgar Rice Burroughs. Silians exist on Barsoom, which is the fictional name representing the dying planet, Mars]HOWARD’S USAGE:The Master beat on his Master-drum,(Wild, roaring wild, like an unrefined sea!)Back through the fogs flew the whispering thrum,(Hide-covered log on a lone white lea,Ape-man pounding on a sounding tree.)Primal seas with their silian scum,Planetary chaos with the cosmic hum,Whispered down the ages on the Master-Drum!…..Midnight skies and a flying ghost-fire,Crone-faced witches, wild against the moon,Dark, silent city, Devil-crowning spire,Witch-fire flitting o’er the sullen mire,And the devil-devil secrets of the isle-wind’s rune.

Ghost fire flitting through the flying wrack,Flame-rid dreams of a maniac.Hiss of a serpent, laughter of a loon.And the tales of the Past on the night-wind’s croon.

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Tales of the Past, a-whirl and a-thrum,Whispered down the ages with the Master-drum.[from “The Master-Drum”; to read the complete poem, see The Collected Poetry of Robert E. Howard, p. 489; Robert E. Howard Selected Poems, p.

198; and Night Images, p. 72]

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