My ‘tell-tale heart’ skipped a beat

Published 10:07 pm Monday, October 4, 2010

Ah, distinctly I remember, it was in elementary school when I was first introduced to Edgar Allan Poe.

Some of the author’s work was in our literature textbook, and I remember being captivated by “The Tell-Tale Heart.” By the time I made it to high school, my copy of his selected works already featured a torn cover and pages worn thin at the top corners from turning and dog-earing.

My fascination with Poe hasn’t yet waned. As a high school sophomore, I chose “The Tell-Tale Heart” for a dramatic reading performed in front of my class. “The Raven” was a memorization assignment that year. As a senior in college, I recited “The Bells” from memory as part of a poetry course assignment.

That’s why I was so thrilled when I saw that a Suffolk library will host “Poe Comes Alive” on Oct. 20 at 6:30 p.m. The North Suffolk Library, 2000 Bennett’s Creek Park Road, will host Scott Craig Jones of the Traveling Jones Theater that night. In addition to “The Tell-Tale Heart,” Jones’ show includes performances of “The Raven,” “The Masque of the Red Death,” “The Conqueror Worm,” “Spirits of the Dead,” “Eldorado,” “Annabel Lee” and “A Dream Within a Dream.”

My delight about the show was quickly deflated, however, when I realized it’s the third Wednesday of the month. That means I’ll have to give up the Poe show for the equally suspenseful and exciting City Council meeting.

However, I would encourage anybody who is able to go that night to make an effort to attend — and take the older kids. The event is not recommended for children younger than 7 because of its possibly scary content, but I’m sure numerous older children already are doing extra chores in preparation for asking their parents for the special trip.

As I told my co-workers here last week, Poe was one of the first authors to inspire my love of literature and writing. Maybe this show will be the impetus for at least one attendee’s future career.