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Author Topic: Pseudopod 289: The Rainbow Serpent  (Read 3536 times)
eytanz
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« on: July 07, 2012, 02:46:01 PM »

Pseudopod 289: The Rainbow Serpent

By Vincent Pendergast

“The Rainbow Serpent” was first published by Shock Totem in their second issue, July 2010.

Vincent Pendergast lives here and there in the south eastern corner of Australia – sometimes it’s the rural Riverina, and other times the coastal Illawarra, where this story is set.

Your reader this week is Daniel Foley, who previously read Destiny With A Blackberry Sauce for Podcastle.

“People were clever. They knew Rainbow Serpent, they knew his story. When he sang to them they saw his form and would not come close.

So Rainbow Serpent swallowed the sun, bringing darkness to the land and hiding his true form. When he sang they came willingly, he grew fat again, and everything was good.’”



Listen to this week's Pseudopod.
« Last Edit: July 13, 2012, 10:33:43 PM by Bdoomed » Logged
Pirvonen
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« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2012, 02:08:52 AM »

A beautiful voice this narrator has. Absolutely sumptuous, pleasure to listen to. Had a bit of difficulty with scene changes -- wait, are we elsewhere now -- but so what, the layered texture of the story almost requires such ambivalence.

I must have missed something at the end, I didn't get a closure. Must listen again. With pleasure.
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« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2012, 08:32:14 AM »

I feel like I missed something with this.  So, apparently the rainbow serpent has taken a modern guise as a bus picking up the stupid and the isolated to lure them in and digest them.  I think I remember hearing of the rainbow serpent before, an Australian legend I guess?

But beyond that, I feel like I missed something.  It revealed pretty early on that the serpent was the bus, didn't it?  So I'm not sure what happened beyond that, of note.  The unmarked shifts in time didn't help as I tried to reorient myself again between the present of Gavin riding the bus, the past of Gavin's argument with his ex, and the far past of the rainbow serpent's history.
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Pirvonen
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« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2012, 03:12:19 AM »

I still am missing two things at least. What is the gun episode doing, is he going odd to shoot Cindy or her imagined lover, is he off to off himself, what? Where is he coming from if Dapto is half-way to Wollongong, why is he travelling, where is he going to and why?

Overall, I still like. Left open-ended, but not without merit even now.
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Zuishness
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« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2012, 04:22:40 PM »

I think the story was less about Gavin and more about the Rainbow Serpent, his land and his power over the people. We are told that The Rainbow Serpent has swallowed the sun and that when he sings they come to him willingly. Could this be about losing hope for the future? People without hope who cheerfully jump into a spiral of addiction, abuse and despair? A pertinent topic for all humans, especially indigenous folk living in a land and society that is increasingly incompatible with their spiritual beliefs and physiology.

The fact that the Rainbow Serpent Bus was complete with singing, harmonica playing worshippers aboard was really quite eerie. Endlessly arriving in Dapto? Hmm. Regular hell doesn't sound quite so bad now.

 The Dreamtime stories don't usually make for gripping thrillers, so it's not suprising that this modern version of one doesn't end with a real twist or an almighty bang. But that isn't a bad thing. I rather liked this. It had a genuine twang of modern Australiana about it, enhanced by an awesome reading.
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kibitzer
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« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2012, 10:20:24 PM »

Where is he coming from if Dapto is half-way to Wollongong, why is he travelling, where is he going to and why?

http://goo.gl/maps/WtXa
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Red Dog 344
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« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2012, 04:14:42 PM »

Great stuff, very Robert Aickman--an infinite regression of shades in between living and dying.
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Sgarre1
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« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2012, 05:38:13 PM »

Quote
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Great stuff, very Robert Aickman--an infinite regression of shades in between living and dying.

and digestion, don't forget about digestion....

Glad you liked it.  - "we please to aim"!
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Kaa
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« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2012, 09:57:32 AM »

I tried to listen to this one while distracted and...well, let's just say I was so lost I couldn't find it on a map.

Then I re-listened to it while I could focus on the story by itself and I liked it quite a bit. I thought the shifts in time were a bit hard to follow in the audio format. I wish there were something you guys at Escape Artists could decide on as an audio 'three-line break' or " * * * " or whatever so that listeners could clue in when there's a scene shift. Different readers handle it differently, and it's confusing.

ANYWAY...I enjoyed the story, even if it did have a bit of a bleak ending. Dude probably deserved to get eaten by Rainbow Serpent, considering.

In other news, I'm never riding a bus again.
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I invent imaginary people and make them have conversations in my head. I also write.

About writing || About Atheism and Skepticism (mostly) || About Everything Else
Red Dog 344
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« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2012, 01:01:50 PM »

I wish there were something you guys at Escape Artists could decide on as an audio 'three-line break' or " * * * " or whatever so that listeners could clue in when there's a scene shift.

I thought about this too, listening to the story.  It wouldn't be too hard to settle on a small library of gentle, non-intrusive sound clips (maybe crickets for an outdoor story; muffled traffic noises in the background for a more urban story) to serve this purpose.  I hesitated to bring it up regarding "The Rainbow Serpent," though, because I think the author intended ambiguity as to what counted as "a scene" or "a shift."  The risk in adding the audio equivalent of section headings, pregnant pauses, set changes, and "fade to blacks" is that you mess up the author's design.
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TheFunkeyGibbon
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« Reply #10 on: July 20, 2012, 03:40:23 PM »

I LOVED this story. Such a trip, the shifts the imagery and the brilliant fusing of the old world myth with the here and now made for a story that evoked the idea of a cave painting that morphed into some on a LED screen, the same but updated.

Add to this a silky-smooth reding and there was no way that I wasn't going to love this... Smiley
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TheFunkeyGibbon
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« Reply #11 on: July 20, 2012, 06:06:37 PM »

Ooops double post.
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danofspiz
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« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2012, 11:34:54 PM »

I am this story's narrator (see initial post). I'm extending an invitation for anyone who enjoyed this tale - or my reading of it - to follow me on Twitter.

You'll find me at https://twitter.com/danofspiz

When you do get there, be sure to let me know that PseudoPod sent you...
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countblackula
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« Reply #13 on: July 31, 2012, 01:48:32 PM »

Excellent. Strange, but very good nonetheless. Hats off to a great narrator.
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Narrator for Escape Pod, Pseudopod, and Podcastle. Check out my YouTube channel here
Balu
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« Reply #14 on: July 31, 2012, 07:14:02 PM »

But beyond that, I feel like I missed something.  It revealed pretty early on that the serpent was the bus, didn't it?  So I'm not sure what happened beyond that, of note. 

Nothing really, but I think it was worth the ride.

Horrendous pun not intended.
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Vincent
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« Reply #15 on: August 11, 2012, 10:12:22 AM »

Hey, I'm the guy who wrote this one. Glad to see that people enjoyed it.

This was a new experience for me too, listening to my words read aloud by someone else. Pretty cool.
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kibitzer
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« Reply #16 on: August 12, 2012, 07:09:45 AM »

Hey, I'm the guy who wrote this one. Glad to see that people enjoyed it.

This was a new experience for me too, listening to my words read aloud by someone else. Pretty cool.

Thanks for dropping by! Always awesome when the author says hello, even after whatever's been said on the forum Wink
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Vincent
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« Reply #17 on: August 12, 2012, 07:51:36 PM »


Thanks for dropping by! Always awesome when the author says hello, even after whatever's been said on the forum Wink

Yeah no worries. I figured I'd give everyone a chance to say their piece, good or bad, before I came snooping.
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Sir Postsalot
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« Reply #18 on: August 13, 2012, 08:55:56 AM »


Thanks for dropping by! Always awesome when the author says hello, even after whatever's been said on the forum Wink

Yeah no worries. I figured I'd give everyone a chance to say their piece, good or bad, before I came snooping.

Welcome!!  Always good to have the authors stop by.  Smiley
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Vincent
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« Reply #19 on: November 18, 2012, 08:45:59 AM »


Thanks for dropping by! Always awesome when the author says hello, even after whatever's been said on the forum Wink

Yeah no worries. I figured I'd give everyone a chance to say their piece, good or bad, before I came snooping.

Welcome!!  Always good to have the authors stop by.  Smiley

Well thank you  Smiley
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