Mother Hydra’s Mythos Rhymes, or a Devious Collection of Nefarious Rhymes for Budding Cultists by which the Reader Will Help Open the Gates and Usher Forth a New Era of Darkness
Transcribed by: Jarred W. Wallace
Illustrated by: Heather Hudson
Published by: Armitage House
Page Count: 42
Where to Buy:
Teaching the Old Ones to the Young-Uns
What dark childhood secret could cause a grown man or woman to want to summon a god, stare into the face of unspeakable horror or consort with the dead?
You may hold the answer in your hands.
Resurrected from the vaults of the Sefton Asylum, this charming, forbidden and fully-illustrated tome contains twenty-one sinister, mythos-inspired nursery rhymes and a complete alphabet to horrify and amuse the little monster in everyone.
“I may not know reality, but I know what I like, and what I like is this book.” – Randolph Carter, Noted Sleep Advocate
“If I’d used this book first, this world would have been cleared of all earth beings by now.” – Wilber Whateley, Backwoods Philanthropist
“This book has reanimated my interest in the forbidden arts.” – Dr. Herbert West, Dubious Scientist
“This blasphemous volume was not meant for the likes of man and should be securely locked away.” – Dr. Henry Armitage, Retired Bibliophile
About the Author:
Jarred Wallace lives in a perpetual state of immanent flight, a carefully assembled escape and evasion kit always packed and ready by the front door. Do not wake him unless you know where his gun is first. Every October he can be found at the H. P. Lovecraft Film Festival in Portland, Oregon. Persons in need of his assistance in matters both undead and unearthly should contact him there.
About the Artist:
Heather Hudson paints art for fantasy games. Over the years she has painted illustrations for collectible card games, RPGs and magazines, and her work appears regularly in Wizards of the Coast’s Magic; the Gathering. On a more personal note, she was born in a barn and raised by coyotes, but still has enough of the thin veneer called civilization to thank Jarred, for the opportunity to illustrate this book, and the graphic designer for putting it together and making it look so good. Visit her online portfolio at www.studiowondercabinet.com.
Hello Ghouls and Boils,
Tonight, for your consideration we bring you Mother Hydra’s Mythos Rhymes. This Cthulhu Mythos inspired nursery rhyme book has provided many a good laugh at the Lovecraft Film Festival. (A great stocking stuffer for the cultist in your life!) Since I am still under typing restrictions, I will let Joe tell you all about it. Enjoy my fiends!
Sarah L. Gerhardt
This slim tome purports to be a reproduction of a volume passed on to Dr. Theophilus Algernon Tanner by his patient, Gregory Hyatt, a well-known antiquarian and bibliophile. While on his death bed Hyatt begged Dr. Tanner to remove the book from his sight and destroy it for the sake of all mankind. Being of an inquisitive nature Tanner ignored the pleas of his dying patient, choosing to hold on to the book for further study. To his horror he found the verse collected within its pages was reminiscent of classic nursery rhymes, but with an abominable twist. These verses schooled their young audience in the ways of ritual sacrifice to Elder Gods, of horrible eldritch beings from other dimensions, and of madness brought about by things not meant to be comprehended by the puny mental capacity of humankind.
Long time attendees of the H. P. Lovecraft Film Festival know author Jarred Wallace as the proprietor of Dagon Industries, and the tone of this tome fits in with the aesthetic behind that line of merchandise: cheeky, irreverent and a slightly humorous take on the Cthulhu Mythos. A hypothetical reader’s reaction to Mother Hydra’s Mythos Rhymes depends largely on where their allegiances fall upon the humor/cosmic horror scale. Unfortunately I prefer my Old Ones to remain beings that instill terror, awe and a sense of one’s own cosmic insignificance, not deities which inspire hearty chuckles and a desire to cuddle one’s cute Cthulhu plush.
Nevertheless some of the Mythos Rhymes did hit their demented mark. “DAGON” inspired nostalgic visions of Wallace enthusiastically leading that chant at this year’s HPL Film Festival. “The Dreamer Traveling to Kadath” and “Henry Armitage” succinctly and vividly summarize Lovecraftian-type stories within a four-line rhyme scheme. “Baa Baa Black Goat” is a clever recasting of “Baa Baa Black Sheep” with the Shub-Niggurath as its subject. “This Little Cultist” has the distinction of being the only nursery rhyme in the book to actually send a chill of delight down my spine with its loathsome last line. Other rhymes such as “If You’re a Cultist and You Know it” attempt to cram too many words into the metrical scheme, creating an off kilter rhythm running long by a syllable or two. Maybe it was a conscious effect, a metaphorical prose representation of Non-Euclidean geometrical spaces. Still, the overall effect could have had more impact if it tightly fit the scansion of the original nursery rhyme it parodied.
For my money, My First Mythos Alphabet is the better half of the book. Modeled after early reader alphabet primers, this section summarizes a Mythos concept using each letter of the alphabet (“M is for Mi-Go the fungi from space”). This half of the book delightfully showcases illustrator Heather Hudson’s devilishly macabre artwork.
Final Thoughts: While probably too precious and cute for the serious Cthulhulian cultist, Mother Hydra’s Mythos Rhymes contains a few clever rhymes, an amusing eldritch alphabet primer, and ghoulishly morbid artwork by Heather Hudson. It is probably best reserved for light entertainment after a minor sacrifice, or unwitting group summonings in a large gathering such as the H. P. Lovecraft Film Festival. I give the book 2 ½ out of 5.
Joe Pettit Jr. – Minion (Reviewer)