Blood Meridian, Chapter Eight: “He looked like some loutish knight beriddled by a troll.”

As I suspected, the Jackson thing comes to a…head (sorry, I couldn’t resist).  I don’t want to ruin the surprise for anyone that is not caught up yet, but I had my money on one of them, and I was right.  What a way to go.

In the beginning of the chapter, the boys are looking for a drink.  They find a real choice spot.  Wisdom comes from strange places in this novel, and this chapter is no exception.  The bartender has some choice nuggets.

If I was going to write a thesis on the book, I would choose a religious theme.  The bartender talks about church and God:

I pray to God for this country.  I say that to you.  I pray.  I dont go in the church.  What I need to talk to them dolls there?  I talk here.

Church, like organized religion, is “dolls.”  Idolatry maybe.  Or maybe the church is false, but God is real.  Or maybe God is wilder than organized religion is ready to deal with.

We see that the country itself is thirsty for blood: “The blood of a thousand Christs.  Nothing.”  I have never seen country, like the earth itself, so alive.

Darkness is all around.  People are disappearing, including the veteran from a previous chapter.  The judge notices, but most other people don’t seem to.  Once they realize someone is gone, the thinking is that they have quit and turned back.  I am suspicious.  I certainly wouldn’t want to head out on my own in this country.  I doubt anyone fares too well flying solo.

They ride through a sacked indian camp, and it seems like a rough scene.  The first scalp they took in the chapter before, they said that woman was from a “meatcamp.”  I don’t know what that means?  Here maybe?  Any help, Dunce One?

The land seems to be getting, if possible, more sparse.  And there is a building sense that something is coming (I sneaked a peak ahead, and there are about to be more interactions with the natives; scary!).

Another reference to an anchorite.

Still liking it; still moving forward.

 

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