we saved a chair for you, old master,
there in the half-lit corner
among the other shadows
blend in and watch
Roderick Usher fall across the threshold
his death rattle in unison
with shrouded Madeline’s;
while Ligeia mourns endlessly behind the drapes
having yielded to the angels,
envious of Morella’s rebirth.
William Wilson stands over his dying doppelganger
and Red Death hovers by the ebony clock,
the Raven perched upon his shoulder.
the pallid bust of Pallas falls and shatters
as Metzingerstein, astride the mighty stallion Berlifitzing,
gallops up the flaming stairs
the black cat sitting imperturbable on the bannister
oh, yes, old master, you too are moved;
I hear the thunder of your telltale heart
thrilling to a chorus of dead ladies
Lenore, Annabelle Lee, and all their kin
reading their MS by the light of eight chained orangutans
Hop-Frog spitting one last jest as he directs the choir
while Montresor busily keeps time with his trowel,
working in silence as the jingle of Fortunato’s bells
dies away in a maelstrom of Amontillado
Copyright 2012 by Faire Lewis.
I wrote this poem in slightly different form for a creative writing class I took in college. I call it Poe “patches” because it’s literally patched together from characters and images from his poems and stories.