FIND in
<--prev V212 next-->
Date: Sun, 29 Dec 2002 16:58:12 -0700
From: maa32 
Subject: (urth) a  (kind of) brief summary

My theory in the past was argued against primarily based on the ideas that

1)Blue system couldn't be Urth system because the animals were "doubled".

2) Blue system couldn't be Urth system because there was no mechanism to 
explain how the narrator wound up in the past at Rigolio's home, while SOME 
time had passed since Rigolio left. This was the big killer that I struggled 
to overcome.

3)My argument was theme based - a man who doesn't know who he is attempts to 
go home, only to discover that he has changed so much that he is going to a 
home that was never his ... while ironically, he is on his home system but 
can't recognize it because both it, and humanity, have changed.

Read the chapter in Sword of the Lictor with Typhon again.  Here is the 
clincher - he knows that URTH WILL FLOOD.  He TELLS Severian that water brings 
purification and renewal, and hints that the Urth will be flooded.  He knows a 
lot more than anyone else, including Severian - he knows exactly who the 
conciliator is.

Due to the importance of hybridization and plant genetics to the first chapter 
of The Book of the Short Sun, I posited a mechanism to explain the doubling of 
limbs which in fact WAS textually grounded - hybridization is a doubling, 
whether you believe it or not.  And it explains why inhumi don't have to eat 
and can survive being buried, and perhaps why the narrator no longer requires 
normal sustenance and how the Green Man came to be.  (Chloroplasts aren't just 
going to appear without some kind of endosymbiosis in an animal cell, right?  
Only this time the trees are the active consumers)

I lacked the mechanism to explain how time travel occured, but I cited several 
examples of time/astral travel, including his observation of Nettle on the 
beach and his appearance in Salica's stories - things which don't make much 
"real" sense unless you buy into the time thing - then I quoted that "The song 
of the mother is a song of time" and that "the only return to the past is in 
dreams" and that the narrator considers his astral travel dreams.

Then with this new interpolation of Urth as Green, I quickly grabbed onto the 
evidence in the text that supports it - the narrator thought of Green's 
jungles and his son Sinew, and Rigolio was thinking of his home, and SILK 
thought about how he wanted to show everyone how the world of blue could be 
corrupted.  Also, a song was playing - a song of time.  This is all in Chapter 
20 and 21 of In Green's Jungles.  It explains how we went back to a time right 
before the new "corruption" of Urth through Severian.

Here is the final piece of evidence, in my mind, that Wolfe wanted to point me 
in the right direction.  Several months ago he sent me a letter, which was 
written on the back of a manuscript page.  I didn't realize it at the time, 
thinking it was a mistake, but the manuscript came from CHAPTER 20 of In 
Green's Jungles, right before where the narrator talks about thinking of 
Green.  I think Wolfe likes me - and that he wanted to point me in the 
direction of Chapter 20 - and in his subtle way, he sent me a manuscript page 
to clue me in.  He is very, very subtle - as we all know.  I don't think he 
wants everyone to know about it, since it is very easy to deny, but I think he 
wrote the text with the idea that he could fool everyone into thinking that it 
was a different place - and that the whole text is an effort to misdirect the 
reader away from the real questions:

Where is HORN? (Not where is Silk - too obvious)
What is the secret of the vanished gods? (Not what is the secret of the inhumi 
- too obvious)
What is the plan of the Mother? (Not what is the plan of Pas - which might be 

Also, I believe that the blind man killed on Green who the narrator mistakes 
for Auk is an avatar of Hierax - remember that it is revealed that he is dead 
in Return to the Whorl - and the mistake was made because Auk was possessed by 
Hierax for so long.  Also, I believe that Silk goes back to Green to free 
Chenille, and that she comes to Blue WITH THE SILVER RING and is fed upon by 
Jahlee in Dorp, but never meets up with Silk.  She is drunk because she is sad 
that her children on Green have been killed.

My answer to the three challenges:

1.  The trees account for the doubling, APPLYING the secret of the inhumi to 
explain what happened to the vanished people, and what happened to Urth.  And 
it explains the meaning of the chrasmological writings that make Silk cry at 
the end of the work - humanity, while dead, thrives on as flower - and it 
explains the eucharist scenes in the forest as well - the transmutation of 
grapes into blood.
2. The mechanism at the end of Chapter 20 explains how Silk wound up on Urth 
in the past - he was thinking of Green in the past, and he went to Green in 
the past, where Rigolio wanted to go.
3. The theme is the same - there is just one more level of misdirection- I 
think a level too many for anyone to ever "solve" the text.

I have to strongly disagree about the claim that the books where shoddily 
constructed.  I think they are the most carefully constructed works ever - 
works so careful that the veneer of misdirection is almost too good.  Very few 
people can see past their first impression of the books because they don't 
want to admit that they MISSED SOMETHING BIG.  And I think we all missed a lot 
of big things the first time through.  Just read the books through again and 
pay attention to the trees, and you will be blown away.  I swear it - really 
pay attention to them.  And think of them as vanished gods who can create life 
- possibly the vanished gods who were awakened in the mine of Saltus by the 
Claw of the Conciliator to rise up and change the face of the world.

We should still pay attention to Seawrack and the Mother's plans - Silk goes 
back in time to placate the mother and learn the location of Seawrack.  She is 
a threat of some kind - just look at the conclusions description of her.

I better go. 
Marc Aramini


<--prev V212 next-->