"...we should pass over all biographies of 'the good and the great,' while we search carefully the slight records of wretches who died in prison, in Bedlam, or upon the gallows."
~Edgar Allan Poe

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Newspaper Clipping of the Day, Thanksgiving Edition

The truth is, Edgar's turned vegetarian.

One year ago, I published on the World of Edgar Allan Poe blog the following story from the "Grange Advance" for January 7, 1874.  This may be a rerun, but damn it, if this turkey poem doesn't deserve to become a beloved annual holiday tradition, what does?

May all my American readers have a happy Thanksgiving tomorrow!


[The other evening at a seance of spiritualists in Hastings, Minnesota, Edgar A. Poe, the great American poet, announced himself as present. Among other questions, he was asked which one of the good things of this life he missed most in his new abode. His answer, to the great surprise of his interviewers, was "a good, square meal." He added that he had not had too many of them while alive, but that since his transfer to the spirit-world his ethereal stomach had been perfectly disgusted with the light diet to which it was subjected and that while making a meal the other day of a gentle zephyr, flavored with the breath of roses, his imagination had longingly reverted to the last roast turkey he had enjoyed on earth, and that he had thereupon composed the following additional verse to his "Bells." He added, with suppressed raps and with long pauses between the words, that "there was nothing in the spirit world equal to roast turkey;" and in the silence which followed a peculiar sound was heard which the medium said was the smacking of Poe's ghostly lips over the recollections of "the royal bird." The verse is as follows, and we trust our readers will accept the moral of the poem, especially in this holiday season, which is, to take all the comforts out of this life they possibly can.]


Hear the glorious dinner bells,
Copper, silver, golden bells,
Sympathetic dinner bells;
What a world of satisfaction,
Their melody foretells.
And the turkey, smoking hot,
From the dark ambrosial pot,
Crammed with sweetness till it swells,
And it smells! oh! it smells,
As if an angel dwells
In the circumambient air;
And from irridescent wings,
O'er the loaded table flings,
Paradisial odors rare,
Filling, thrilling all the air.
While it smells! oh! it smells,
Smells, smells, smells,
Smells, smells, smells,
As if the saints forgiven,
Through the open gates of heaven,
Flung the beaming, gleaming,
Light of Eden rare;
Through the circumambient air,

[It may be objected that this verse is hardly equal to the rest of Poe's poetry, but allowances must be made for the light diet on which it was produced. EDITOR GRANGE ADVANCE.]

1 comment:

  1. I'm not American, and Canada's Thanksgiving Day was last month, but this poem made my mouth water nonetheless. It also made my eyes water...


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