Saturday, 27 June 2009

Miss Arabella Cloud

A poet, essayist, and philosopher, Miss Cloud is something of a recluse and invalid. She is a longstanding believer in spiritualism, and claims, whilst on her sick-bed, to have experienced ‘liminal’ sensations herself, where she has been trapped ‘between worlds’ and given privileged insights into the workings of the universe. She believes the men of science have not approached the question of life after death with an open mind, and that there are limits to scientific knowledge – not only things about the universe that science does not know, but that it cannot know – there are ‘more things in heaven and earth’. Articulate and impassioned, she challenges the assumptions of scientific methodology as pronounced by Wendell. She remains unconvinced by some of the medium’s more theatrical claims, perhaps deriding them as ‘sensational’ parlour amusements, whilst believing in spiritualism and mysticism writ large.

Miss Cloud thinks that the hostile attitude of Mr Wendall and Mr Middleton is borne of arrogance and a need to impose their views on others. Why are they so scared that there may be forces at work that they had not previously known of? There are strange phenomena and special forces can only be divined by certain people. As a poet she understands that artists often experience the world in ways different to the common man – why do they deny this?