A Wounded Deer — leaps highest
I’ve heard the Hunter tell
‘Tis but the Ecstasy of death
And then the Brake is still!
Ah yes, the obsessively morbid poetry of Emily Dickinson. Given her obsession with death and violence, it is surprising that when it comes to modern dark arts her name isn’t mentioned as often as that of, say, Edgar Allen Poe or HP Lovecraft.
Enter JOHN 3:16, a long running dark ambient project of Phillipe Gerbert whose new single shares its name with one of Emily’s poems. As for the said poem’s meaning…
It is an interesting paradox that a violence engenders liveliness. The shot deer makes a tremendous leap before falling dead in the bushes (“the Brake”). The “ecstasy of death” the poet calls it, and maybe it is, as if all the remaining life in the animal gathers itself for one final fling. Better, perhaps, than floundering on the ground. – The Prowling Bee
The video may not make much sense at first, since deer are generally considered one of cutest animals around and there’s nothing violent happening in the frame, not even a drop of blood to be seen anywhere. No, what’s important is the idea of what might be happening once the video is over – the hunter/hunted dynamics and the idea that both the men and the animal alike can be aroused by the heightened sense of danger/possibility of instant death.