by Samuel Jones
One December morning dreary, I dismounted cold and weary
After riding long and swiftly o'er the dark and dreary moor.
Servants told me, "grieving season's overturned your uncle's reason
Now he's mutterin' and seizin', in the corner on floor!"
Thus with pounding heart I turned the handle of his chamber door
Sensing him and. . . something more?
Uncle, tortured, took no notice of my entrance; all the while his
Bloodshot eyes burned into something just above the chamber door.
This sad sight my heart was rifting when I heard a subtle shifting
As of ancient parchment sifting, behind me above the door.
Startling sent me whirling, glimpsing Pallas' pale bust shadowed o'er
With darkness shrieking, "Nevermore."
But my reason exercising, breathing, calming, realizing
It was nothing but a raven as of saintly days of yore.
Yet it's eyes wickedly gleaming, with capricious carriage seeming. . .
'Twas no bird, but scheming faerie of the pagan days before!
Whose delight is one dark utterance from his perch above the door,
Shaking weak men to their core.
"Nevermore!" the creature rasping, I was diving, I was grasping
Swift to hand a large and heavy volume of forgotten lore.
Through the air I heaved it whirling, and the blow sent feathers swirling.
When they settled there was nothing of the phantom there before,
And my uncle like a baby, sweetly sleeping on the floor.
Madness lifted, evermore.