Thrilled me- filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before… -EA Poe
I first read Edgar Allan Poe when I was eleven years old. I found an Encyclopedia entry on Poe. My father’s encyclopedia set was one of a daily-favorite things to read, he would oft find me at three in the morning, passed out atop a pile of randomly chosen letter-groups books.
[Come to think of it, after a long morning of writing and reading online today it seems that encyclopedia perusing is akin to browsing the internet and reading through colligated articles (minus the social interaction)- finding one bit of information that reminds me of another and leads to further research, getting all sleuthy with my knowledge. It relates to a voracious hyperactivity in reading and media consumption that seems to not be sated ever, only exhausted.]
Anyway, in the article, I read an excerpt of “The Raven” and was instantly curious, totally enthralled. I wanted to ensconce myself in knowledge of this dark author. So! I did what every fascinated internetless adolescent would do- I hit up the public library. There was a trove of books on and by Edgar Allan Poe. I picked up some poetry and a compilation of short stories. I was awestruck, but… the morbidity, the macabre, the humor, the mystery! Being a child with a very serious mind (and as long as I can remember a lover of all things horror, at that age my favorites were: Hitchcock, Twilight Zone, Tales from the Crypt, Nightmare on Elm St- no really, my parents were not great censors), I fell into literary love. The first stories I read were, ‘The Tell-Tale Heart’, ‘The Cask of Amontillado’, ‘The Pit & The Pendulum’, ‘Dream Within a Dream’ and of course, ‘The Raven’. Reading Poe at such a young age had an enormous influence on my tastes (in humor and literature) and understanding of literature that were introduced to me PP (post-Poe). It was smart and it scared me, and I liked it.
Revisiting my love for this American author has inspired me to pick him up, again. I’d like to check out his only completed novel The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket. In the meantime, I found this great link via @jafurtado on Twitter. Here, Christopher Walken reads ‘The Raven’. Enjoy.
Especially the bit about throwing of dock lines and sailing away away away from safe harbors. To me, this is all-encompassing: emotional, physical, psychological. Expression is a good outlet to exercise this. One never really knows how their exploration is interpreted or judged. It means everything to me to put myself out there (lovin, giving,sharing)… wind in my sails and all that.
Old friends pass away, new friends appear. It is just like the days. An old day passes, a new day arrives. The important thing is to make it meaningful: a meaningful friend - or a meaningful day. -Dalai Lama
Leaving New York City for Seattle in the morning. Elated to be going home- where I will immerse myself in state of complete lavation (mind, body) and process my experience and reassess my life at this juncture.
So many things are changing right now, it is stressful and exciting and exhausting and necessary and inevitable. Looking into the threshold of my 30th birthday next month and quite frankly, feeling very good about the experience of my twenties. I am channeling the courage I felt at 18 but with the wisdom of a decade (a packed, chock-full to the brim and spilling over with meaningful experiences, interactions-decade).
Gratitude is the word- I am grateful to feel that kindness, compassion, and love are not luxuries, but necessities for humanity (also stated by DL). It gives me a sense of purpose and courage.
A clandestine visit should leave a memory in which one can luxuriate for hours- nay, days after. A true gentleman is as tender and affectionate on the way out as in. This has been true for so long. Sei Shonagon, courtesan and author (10th century Japan) exquisitely describes this phenomenon in her diary cum literary notebook ”The Pillow Book”.
“A good lover will behave as elegantly at dawn as at any other time. He drags himself out of bed with a look of dismay on his face. The lady urges him on: “Come, my friend, it’s getting light. You don’t want anyone to find you here.” He gives a deep sigh, as if to say that the night has not been nearly long enough and that it is agony to leave. Once up, he does not instantly pull on his trousers. Instead, he comes close to the lady and whispers whatever was left unsaid during the night. Even when he is dressed, he still lingers, vaguely pretending to be fastening his sash.” -Sei Shonagon