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"Lovecraft Rising" this weekend in Providence

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While Rhode Island sometimes seems like a horror show -- what with the budget meltdown, high property taxes, big hair, and any number of other problems -- the Ocean State has a historic link to two great horror writers, Edgar Allan Poe and H.P. "I am Providence" Lovecraft.

Lovecraft will be celebrated this weekend, and Bill Rodriguez offers a preview in this week's Phoenix:

[T]he annual H. P. Lovecraft Tribute Service is being held for the 10th consecutive year, on Sunday, March 30 at 3 pm, on the front grounds of the Ladd Observatory, 210 Doyle Avenue, Providence Afterward, the group will reconvene to pay respects at the author’s Swan Point Cemetery grave. As a boy, Lovecraft enjoyed gazing up at the stars through the Ladd telescope, and his ghost has reportedly been sighted there.
 
Born in 1890 in the house now at 454 Angell Street, Lovecraft died in Providence 46 years later, eventually admired as the pioneering writer of the fantasy-horror genre.
 
If some of the stories of Edgar Allan Poe, who died four decades before Lovecraft’s birth, were dark and macabre, most of Lovecraft’s were pitch-black and filled with what he called “cosmic horror.” His characters typically ended up facing not only unearthly frights, from such things as evil, ancient creatures among us, but they also feared a nihilistic universe of ultimate despair.
 
Like a couple clinging to each other during a slasher film, shrieking in guilty relief because their troubles are nothing compared to those depicted on-screen, modern-day escapist readers of Lovecraft can smile as their ordinary travails are put in perspective.

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