Terence George Craddock (Spectral Images and Images Of Light)


The Death Of Edger Allan Poe - Poem by Terence George Craddock (Spectral Images and Images Of Light)

Who is the master
of mysterious macabre
in intense short story
in haunting poetic verse?

The persona
of his poem
Spirits Of The Dead

relates another
of Edger's

possible thematic
dimensions
of haunting death.

These spirits
of the dead
are lost souls
newly come
into death

we witness
their first hour
of death
as our own
potential
after life.

'Into thine
hour of secrecy',

could be our own
fate or destiny,
our own first
awakening in death.

The newly deceased
are advised

'Be silent in that solitude',
in that first hour, because

‘In life before thee, are again
In death around thee, and their will
Shall overshadow thee; be still.’

The concept
of spirits long dead
assuming greater
power than the
newly dead
is embedded
in many cultures.

The poem
Spirits Of The Dead
attains rich
macabre imagery

but the essence is

‘Now are thoughts thou shalt not banish,
Now are visions ne'er to vanish’

These words
describing thoughts and visions
ne’er to banish or vanish,

imply an eternity
to face the consequences
of our deeds in life
in a limbo of the lost.

Another rich tale
from a master,
at invoking settings
of emotive
alternative realities.

His short stories
reveal a fascination
with emotional extremes,
particularly fear,

though his essays
show that he was capable
of being objective and critical.

And in life too real
how ultimately befell
The Haunted Death
of Edger Allan Poe?

Poe returned to New York city
in 1844 still wretched and poor
despite popular literary acclaim
his life still wretched remained.

Virginia his wife cousin died
of tuberculosis ill in 1847
Poe an alcoholic still poor
died in Baltimore in 1849.

Herein we relate the final fate
of dark romantic doomed to die
in mysterious death tragic deed!

Poe was found in the streets
delirious in a great distress,
in early morn alone coherent
long enough never to explain,

how he came to be in such
a dire deadly condition,
mysteriously oddly
wearing clothes not his.

tragedy the mystery
fitting fate cursed
poet only deepens

Let us recount ‘The Raven’ tis
the night before his death day,
Poe is said to cry out repeatedly
called called the name 'Reynolds'

to whom he was referring
remained eternally unclear,
Poe's final words sourced
'Lord help my poor soul'?

What caused this untimely death?

Poe's death newspapers reported
as 'congestion of the brain' or
'cerebral inflammation', this
common euphemism for deaths

from disreputable causes
such as alcoholism
the actual cause of death
remains a mystery...

a host of wield explanations
abound suggesting multiple,
causes possibilities bizarre
speculation included cooping,

‘delirium tremens’ colloquially
the DTs, the shakes, the horrors,
the heebie geebies, the fear,
the staggers and jags, the rats,

the shakes and the heaves, the abdabs,
afflicted jitterbugs; cholera, epilepsy,
heart disease, meningeal inflammation
rabies, syphilis, conditions precipitous.

Mystery upon Mysteries
medical records,
including his death certificate,
were strangely lost!


Copyright © Terence George Craddock


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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Poem Edited: Monday, April 18, 2011


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