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Quote of the Week

Epigraph of the Month: Poe

Edgar-Allan-Poe-stamp(1)This is the epigraph that Edgar Allan Poe chose for "The Murders in the Rue Morgue":

"What song the Syrens sang, or what name Achilles assumed when he hid himself among women, although puzzling questions are not beyond all conjecture." -- Sir Thomas Browne, Urn-Burial

Formidable and fascinating in its own right, the sentence is perfectly apposite to the story it heads.

Poe's example makes me want to compose a succinct ode to the art of the epigraph, which involves not only a cunning eye for a great and somewhat out-of-the-way quotation but also a determination to build on the quoted material -- to use it to quicken a new work into being.

August 12, 2023

May 26, 2023

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July 03, 2021

June 26, 2021

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That Ship Has Sailed
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"Lively and affectionate" Publishers Weekly


I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman


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