06-08-2008 04:31 AM
I recently discovered a picture of Poe's dead wife is available on Google. She really was incredibly beautiful. She died in her early 20's. He married her (his cousin) when she was l3. She was a child and I was a child.... Seems she was Annabel Lee and Lenore.
06-22-2008 03:09 AM - edited 06-22-2008 03:17 AM
What is brilliant about Poe's writing is that he manages to insightfully play on his reader's sense of physical self, by describing so acutely the sensations experienced by the victims in his stories ("The Premature Burial" is a good example of this), while also unsettling the reader through his portrayal of the mental processes gone through by his more deranged characters. The first time I read "The Black Cat" it was late at night, and I had trouble falling asleep that night, not because the guy in the story kills his wife, but because of the narrator's vividly depicted *desire* to do evil, to cause pain, for no reason at all. It always impresses me when an author can get inside my head and disturb me.
He is also one of the few writers whose mere phrasing is art. To be able to enthrall the reader with the subject matter and also tell it in an intricate, beautiful, and eloquent manner is a rare and astonishing feat.
I also really love "The Bells", it's my favorite poem ever. You can hear all the different types of bells when you read it, and I love the message about the fleeting fickleness of life.
I would also like to make a recommendation, for anyone interested: Go to the library and check out a copy of The Martian Chronicles, by Ray Bradbury. Skip to the chapter "April, 2005: Usher II". You do not have to read the whole book, only this one chapter is relevant for Poe fans, and it stands alone just fine, much like a short story. For background information, this is a science fiction novel about the colonization of Mars. There has been a mass book-burning on Earth, and some eccentric millionaire has recreated the House of Usher on Mars. He knows it will be torn down, but he manages to first throw a party, during which he entertains his guests by staging murders right out of classic Poe stories. If any of you actually take me up on this recommendation, I'd love to hear what you think of it.
Message Edited by bellsofireland on 06-22-2008 03:17 AM