PseudoPod 595: Mysterium Tremendum – Part 2

Show Notes

Part 2 of 3

Listen to Part 1 here:

More information on Blood Standard here:

Mysterium Tremendum

by Laird Barron


Sequim (pronounced Skwim by the locals) was lovely that summer. The town rested near the Dungeness River at the heart of a shallow basin of the Dungeness-Sequim Valley and not far from the bay. Fields of lavender and poppies and tulips dominated the countryside. There were farms and mills and old, dusty roads that wound between wooden fences and stands of oak and birch and poplar trees. Raymond Carver wrote a poem about Sequim. I’d never read that one.

PseudoPod 594: Mysterium Tremendum – Part 1

Show Notes

Part 1 of 3

More information on Blood Standard here:

Mysterium Tremendum

by Laird Barron


We bought supplies for our road trip  at an obscure general goods store in Seattle—a multi-generational emporium where you could purchase anything from space-age tents to snowshoes once worn by Antarctic explorers. That’s where we came across the guidebook.

Glenn found it on a low shelf in the rear of the shop, wedged between antique souvenir license plates and an out of print Jenkins’ Field Guide to Birds of Puget Sound. Fate is a strange and wondrous force—the aisles were dim and narrow and a large, elderly couple in muumuus was browsing the very shelf and it was time for us to go, but as I opened my mouth to suggest we head for the bar down the street, one of them, the man I think, bumped a rack of postcards and several items splatted on the floor. The man didn’t glance back as he walked away.

PseudoPod 593: The Woman in the Hill

Show Notes

I grew up a few kilometres away from Waikopua Creek in what is today known as Whitford, and consider the New Zealand bushlands and rural existence very evocative of Lovecraftian horror: beautiful, but also isolating and impenetrable. “The Woman In The Hill” takes place in the landscape of Whitford and Turanga, in a time when that isolation would have been much more pronounced than it is today. For the sake of accuracy, the original New Zealand language and spelling has been maintained in this letter.

The Woman in the Hill

by Tamsyn Muir

November 11, 1907

Elm Cottage, Turanga

Waikopua Creek, New Zealand


Dear Dorothy,

This is the last time I intend ever to write to you. Though you may take this letter as a freak or crank, I ask that you reconsider how likely it is that I would write such madness—that is, unless I knew it were the truth. In my need to convince you I will lay out the events using only fact—what I saw with my own eyes and have subsequently acted upon based on rational belief—and at the last, pray to God you believe me.

I know you heard the gossip and the insinuation surrounding my young friend Elizabeth W–. I will emphasise again her workaday nature and good common sense, not at all given to the morbid or fantastic, the model of a farmer’s wife. This concerns last April, when she had been recently married and had moved to the property opposite the old Broomfield slip. Regarding my silence on the scandal that surrounded her afterward, I may only defend myself by saying I thought it none of my business to relate. (Continue Reading…)

PseudoPod 592: Free Balloons for All Good Children

Show Notes

“This story came about because the balloon described in it drifted past my window at work.

Because a balloon floating five feet off the ground on a grey day in early October is so unlikely, my first thought was naturally that it was something horrible up to no good at all. It went away… eventually, after hanging around near a bus stop for far longer than seemed quite right. I don’t know what it was actually up to, but I’d like to thank the mystery balloon for the inspiration it provided.

The story was also an attempt to exorcise a vapour I developed about seven years ago– what if I become incapacitated while I’m the only parent on hand for my tender tot? I’m sorry to report that the exorcism has not really worked.”

Free Balloons for All Good Children

by Dirck de Lint

Tom gave the stroller a little nudge to turn Danny out of the sun.  Danny responded by wriggling around under the straps to put himself as much in the sun as possible.  Tom smiled at this, and found that he couldn’t really blame his son.  The day was a little chilly for so late in May, and if he was enjoying the warmth of the sun it stood to reason that Danny would, too.  He was very close to just putting the stroller back the way it had been.  There was some uncertainty in his heart, though, about how far Danny could be trusted to look out for his own safety even now that he was above a year old.  When, he wondered, did they stop staring right at the sun if given a chance? (Continue Reading…)