(urth) Silkhorn's mission after BotSS

Christopher Culver christopher_culver at yahoo.com
Mon Oct 4 23:16:52 PDT 2004

essay which dedicates about a page and a half to Wolfe's solar
works. The overview isn't terribly in-depth, but I found it most
interesting that the writer sees Silk as going on to become "a fisher
of men" among the stars at the end of the Book of the Short Sun.

This changed my view of the ending of the BotSS entirely. I originally
thought it was an inexplicable and cruel abandoning of Blue by
Silkhorn after saving some of his buddies from it (as in the
traditional belief of the Harrowing of Hell). Now, however, I can see
that perhaps Wolfe wanted it to be an optimistic finale in which
worship of the Outsider will spread all over the universe.

Sure, Blue is abandoned by Silkhorn himself, but there are still those
who knew Silk, or read Horn's book, so they know of the Outsider, and
monotheism might continue on, especially if (as Wolfe's Catholic faith
would have it) the Holy Spirit continues its work eternally.

Does the idea of Silk as galactic bringer of good news make anyone
else appreciate the ending of BotSS more?

Christopher Culver

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