It's the birthday of Edgar Allan Poe, born in Boston, Massachusetts (1809). His parents died while he was still a baby, and although he was taken in by a man who eventually made a large fortune, the man disowned him after a series of bitter arguments. He continued to charm possible sponsors for the rest of his life. Rich men and women would offer to help him, but they withdrew when he got drunk at the wrong time, or refused to say what they wanted him to, or squandered the funds they had given him. He wrote pointed criticism at a time when reviews were supposed to be complimentary. When he was able to publish his own work, the writers he criticized took the opportunity to revenge themselves upon him. Nothing he published won him much attention until his poem "The Raven" appeared in the New York Evening Mirror in 1845. Children followed him down the street chanting "Nevermore, nevermore!" and he was asked to recite the poem at all sorts of gatherings. He was also a journalist, and wrote pieces about New York and Baltimore. He wrote about New York, "I have been roaming far and wide over this island of Manhattan. Some portions of its interior have a certain air of rocky sterility which may impress some imaginations as simply dreary--to me it conveys the sublime."
Many people feel the following poem conveys Poe's philosophy and raison d'etre:
by Edgar Allan Poe
From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were; I have not seen
As others saw; I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow; I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone;
And all I loved, I loved alone.
Then- in my childhood, in the dawn
Of a most stormy life- was drawn
From every depth of good and ill
The mystery which binds me still:
From the torrent, or the fountain,
From the red cliff of the mountain,
From the sun that round me rolled
In its autumn tint of gold,
From the lightning in the sky
As it passed me flying by,
From the thunder and the storm,
And the cloud that took the form
(When the rest of Heaven was blue)
Of a demon in my view.
I'm adored by a maid 'cross the sea,
Read the letters she's sending to me;
She's saving a spot
For me in her pot,
And her name is Sweet Cannibel Lee.
I have visited his grave in Baltimore, just across from University Hospital. "Someone" will put a bottle of champagne on the tomb after midnight tonight, WHOOOO-HAHAHAHAHAAA!
Poe is the absolute best. He is my inspiration and idol. Poe rules!
Alone happens to be my favorite Poe poem, but I also enjoy Bridal Ballad.
~Long is the way, and hard, that out of hell leads up to the light.~
"Show me a hero and I shall write you a tragedy."
I LOVE YOU! (God does too.)
I had read somewhere that Poe originally thought of using a parrot instead of a raven...I'll bet its name was Polly.
Happy birthday, Mr. Poe.
As has been the custom for the past 56 years, a mysterious black-cloaked, hooded figure placed 3 roses and a bottle of French cognac on Poe's grave last evening. Only he or she knows why the tradition was started, and why it continues to this day. The curator of the Poe museum in Baltimore observes the strange visitor, who appears around 3 AM on Poe's birthday each year, but never has approached him.
Perhaps the 'mysterious person' is the curator- after all, he or she needs some reason to be hanging around a graveyard at 3 am.
Yeah, cognac, that's the booze. My bad.
Another lesson learned:
A mermaid, I'd seen on the shore
So I anchored my boat for a score,
But my craft, it was stolen
By pirates Angolan:
As the raven would quote, 'never moor'.