What Edgar Allen Poe Would Have Done


Who is your favorite author in the realm of fiction? Do you gravitate to the newbies that excel in sci-fi or the hot novelists? Not me. My choice is Edgar Allan Poe, a favorite of many who like a bit of horror and black humor. I have loved his style since my days in school. Little did I know that it would become a life-long passion. I can’t think of a better endeavor. People read far too little these days and if they do, it is some tidbit online.

I am a writer now and openly admit to his influence. It doesn’t hurt to draw upon one of the world’s greats. Why limit your work to your narrow little realm. This blog is devoted to his life and output, anything and everything I find intriguing about him that I want to share. But I am more than a reader, so don’t be surprised to encounter a retelling of my various experiences. I love being outdoors, particular in the fall. Don’t you live the smell of the dry, faded leaves and smoking wood. The air is so crisp and clear. Maybe Poe would prefer the intensity of winter, but I love autumn first and foremost.

But any time of the year is a good time to talk about Poe, a creative innovator well ahead of his era. He didn’t need modern technology to make his stories exciting and believable. I like to hark back to earlier times and put myself in his shoes. What would I invent if I had access to what we have today?

I think I would have thought of the hot water heater. I imagine its gruesome presence in a dark and dank basement, spewing forth its boiling liquid. It would be a metal menace set on destroying the structure that contains it. I envision a tank monster that kills anything that comes near. Hot broth is as good a weapon as a pen-knife, such as the evil one depicted in the story, The Black Cat. Not quite the average view of things.

It is brutal to be sure, typical of the 19th century master. The home is a site of torture, terror and murder, just like my idea of the killer hot water heater. In both stories, inanimate objects take on a dastardly life. With Poe, and me as his disciple, it is all about interesting, but threatening, imagery. Anything that can cause violence is viable. Perhaps we can look at the pen-knife and the water heater as alter-egos of the writer. Objects become symbols in imaginative writing. Poe takes the lead for me in terms of impact.

If you want to get literary with me, think of the water heater as an allegory about evil lurking in one’s midst, a danger among dangers and a harbinger of death to come to us all. I love to get gloomy when thinking of Poe as it inspires me to create something fresh and new, with a wicked bent.