Better late than never, I always say. … But then again, maybe that’s because I’m so often late to the party. Oh, well. Here’s a selection of links continuing the Halloween theme, as seen in recent posts.

Last week’s Fiction Friday focused on Victorian Age Mysteries. This week it’s Ghost stories and tales of the Supernatural from that same era. Ambrose Bierce kicks things off. Hugh Lamb, “one of Britain’s most acclaimed anthologists of ghosts and gaslight terrors, renowned for unearthing many obscure tales by Victorian and Edwardian writers,” described Bierce as “the Victorian Era’s most shockingly cynical and alarming writer.” Other tales, linked below, come from George MacDonald, Rhoda Broughton, and E.F. Benson.

This week’s poetry entry presents a writer from last week’s newsletter, Edgar Allan Poe. What Halloween-themed work, centered on the Victorian Age, would be complete without a piece by Poe?



Essays and Interviews:

News and Reviews:

Poetry Corner

The Haunted Palace” (1839) by Edgar Allan Poe

In the greenest of our valleys
By good angels tenanted,
Once a fair and stately palace-
Radiant palace- reared its head.
In the monarch Thought’s dominion-
It stood there!
Never seraph spread a pinion
Over fabric half so fair!
Banners yellow, glorious, golden,
On its roof did float and flow,
(This- all this- was in the olden
Time long ago,)
And every gentle air that dallied,
In that sweet day,
Along the ramparts plumed and pallid,
A winged odor went away.

Wanderers in that happy valley,
Through two luminous windows, saw
Spirits moving musically,
To a lute’s well-tuned law,
Round about a throne where, sitting
In state his glory well-befitting,
The ruler of the realm was seen.

And all with pearl and ruby glowing
Was the fair palace door,
Through which came flowing, flowing, flowing,
And sparkling evermore,
A troop of Echoes, whose sweet duty
Was but to sing,
In voices of surpassing beauty,
The wit and wisdom of their king.

But evil things, in robes of sorrow,
Assailed the monarch’s high estate.
(Ah, let us mourn!- for never morrow
Shall dawn upon him desolate!)
And round about his home the glory
That blushed and bloomed,
Is but a dim-remembered story
Of the old time entombed.

And travellers, now, within that valley,
Through the red-litten windows see
Vast forms, that move fantastically
To a discordant melody,
While, like a ghastly rapid river,
Through the pale door
A hideous throng rush out forever
And laugh- but smile no more.

Poe may have created the form of the word for his poem.

A Byzantine emperor’s son born in the purple or porphyry room assigned to empresses, hence a prince born after his father’s accession; a person born into the nobility.

Last week’s Fiction Friday focused on Victorian Age Mysteries. This week, recognizing that Halloween is about a week away, it’s Ghost stories and tales of the Supernatural from that same era.