Eli August pic 2This edition of What Poe Means to Me, features Eli August. Catch Eli August and the Abandoned Buildings at Poe, Pints and Poetry on April 23, 2016.

1. Name and Occupation 
Eli August.  Songwriter/singer
2. What was your first exposure to Edgar Allan Poe? 
I believe that my first real introduction to Mr. Poe’s works was sometime in highschool.
3. What is your favorite Poe piece?
My favorite pieces from Poe would be Cask of Amontillado, The Haunted Palace, Mask of the Red Death, Israfel
4. How has Poe influenced your outlook professionally?
I would say that the works of Poe have done a good deal in influencing my own writing in regards to taking attention to word choice and meanings. You are taken in by his craft and his clear love of words, what they mean, how they sound and where they can take the reader.  To stand somewhere in that great shadow is an honor.
5. What is your favorite thing about visiting the Edgar Allan Poe House?
I like that those who work there care about preserving this man, this history and this city. Being able to step into that house and step back in time and see how one of the worlds great writers lived is an opportunity that should not be passed by.
6. Any other reflections on the role of Poe in Baltimore or in your life?
When I moved to the city in 2010, I admittedly knew very little about it.  But I did know Poe.  His grave was one of the first places I visited and the echoes of his life that still run through this city were in a way a small comfort to me when I was a stranger here.  The world knows Poe and Poe can help the world become better acquainted with Baltimore.

One Response to What Poe Means to Me: Eli August

  1. I have read at the house and my sonnet on the tomb of Poe when I read in the Poe room at Enoch Pratt; I do not see Poe as a revolutionary poet in any way- his lan guage contrasting Dickinson or Whitman.

    However- it’s his subject matter: the preoccupation with death and the specificity there in is the attraction- since death is a great concern persons throughout history have NOT wanted to talk about- and still don’t.He taps into obsession that appeals to me- TEETH, for example- beating hearts, persons engulfed in flames..

    Great contributions to literature come with that sort of specificity= and we see little of it in modern day poetry- take the new yorker or little patuxent review- it’s all quite acadeemic (my spelling)

    Actually, his poetry seems pretty tame in a poem like To Helen- BUT- when he starts to “go off” into his death obsession- it gets interesting. A lot of people like the “To Helen” or “The Raven” becuse the subj matter is tame.

    Malarme’s sonnet “Sur Le Tombeau de Poe” is the greatest tribute. Europeans “got” Poe- amurikans still don’t.

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