Edgar Allan Poe Lovers, Please Help

I’m trying to educate myself in the classics. This is one I don’t get.



Photo by Gwendal Cottin on Unsplash

It took forever. I’m supposed to read a short story every week. I figured, How hard could it be? It’s a short story. But this thing took me all week.


Well, first of all because of my attitude. I had a bad attitude, made up of three elements:
1. ADHD (It’s hard for me to sit down and read sentences that are a page and a half long.)
2. A chip on my shoulder about my poor education. I could have gone to any school I wanted, but I didn’t. My father’s main take on higher education was summed up in this little syllogism: You know what BS is, right? Well, MS is just More of it. And PHD just means it’s Piled Higher and Deeper. So, no encouragement there to get a college education.
3. Shame about privilege that went unused… Shame for having this position in the first place (access to colleges, etc.). Shame for not having put the position to good use.

My education was made up of whatever you get during your first semester and a half of sophomore year in high school. Then it was two years of adult learning courses about different ways to communicate, and therapy modalities. Then, more music, composition, playing piano, singing, writing lyrics, orchestrating, etc.

My point being that because my education had no map to it, there was almost no introduction to the classics in literature, no trigonometry, no history, no deeper social studies, no critical thinking, or any of the other disciplines you’d have to at least have touched as you got through college.

Bottom line: I didn’t know from Edgar Allan Poe. I knew it went with the words “raven” and “nevermore” and “headless horseman.” But I didn’t have any context for those words.

In my desire to cobble together an education for myself, I decided during October to make it timely. It was coming on Halloween. I would read a classic spooky tale written by one of the American literary giants: Edgar Allan Poe. I threw a dart and it landed on “The Fall of the House of Usher.”

Oh please.




Novelist. Poet. Musician. Buddhist. Quilter. Animal lover. Visible grownup. Hidden child. Secret dancer when all alone. Makes good bread.