I have a lot for which to be thankful to Edgar Allan Poe and my fifth grade teacher, Miss Mariness.
First, Miss M. taught us how to scan and analyze poems, and she used Poe’s The Raven the accomplish this. Besides learning how to scan a poem for meter, we learned some very cool words: quaff and nepenthe, Plutonian, pallid, Pallas and many more. Second, after studying this poem, we were required by Miss M to memorize parts of it. I was able at one time to recite long passages of this poem– today I can manage the first two verses from memory. That’s big considering that my memory is not what it used to be. 🙂
However, Poe’s literary legacy is more than just giving school-aged kids some weird vocabulary words to toss around the playground. Poe has been regarded as the creator of the modern short story. He is also the architect of the genres of horror, science fiction, and detective fiction. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle directly credits Edgar Allan Poe with his creation of the Sherlock Holmes stories. Would there be a Stephen King and a Ray Bradbury if it were not for Poe? Most likely not. Since the short stories I have written typically fall into one of these genres, I have much for which to thank Poe.
Now, I need to…