On Poe; Hurricane Sandy; and the US Election

When I left you last, dear readers, I included a link in my blog to a short story by Edgar Allan Poe. As I mentioned, Poe is one of my favorite writers of the short story, perhaps one of the true and great masters. The link that I attached was to one of my favorites, Manuscript Found in a Bottle. The story was first published on October 19, 1833, by the The Baltimore Saturday Visiter (Visitor), when Poe was 34 years of age and in his writing prime. If you should think otherwise – that this story was written by a drunkard, or a writer of status of any less than genius, consider only the opening two lines:

“Of my country and of my family I have little to say. Ill usage and length of years have driven me from the one, and estranged me from the other.”

–Edgar Allan Poe

The writing style is not contemporary.  But the story resonates with voice that is seldom heard these days. Poe’s led a short and tragic life.  A marriage to a 13 year old cousin, who died suddenly of tuberculosis in January of 1842, sent the writer on a drinking binge that would continue until his eventual, untimely and tragic death in 1849.

Remarkably, Poe’s poem ‘The Raven’, first published in 1845, would earn him only nine dollars, but would emblazon his name into the hearts and minds of horror genre fans for the next century and a half.

So read some Poe this season.

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It appears, that the recent weather events in the Northeastern U.S., in the wake of Hurricane Sandy has left all of our friends and family safe and well, and for that we are thankful. The damage, however, looks frightful.

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When I blog again, o’ readers, it will be to beckon all to the polls as the grim night of the United States Presidential election bears down upon all good souls and we cast our votes for whomever we deem most worthy – the one who will lead us to the light in the face of darkness – the one who will remain vigilant as we sleep – perhaps the one who will rebuff the neocons who would lead us into another devastating war in the mid-east.

To that end, I shall leave all with one of my favorite quotes – and no, it is not from Poe. I cannot take credit for it either;  in fact I can’t seem to find its author, but make of it what you will as we near the final days before the U.S. Presidential Election:

“Confidence is the feeling that you have before you completely understand the situation.”

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