The Passive Aggressive Raven

Published by Nevon in the journal Nevon's journal. Views: 1674


(Dan shared with me the above picture, so I made a spin off the original poem, enjoy guys!)

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I ate some steak and gravy,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten mind—
craft. I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber’s blinds—
“’Tis some visitor," I muttered, “tapping at my chamber’s blinds—
Someone must what pork rinds.”

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak September;
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the wind.
Eagerly I wished the morrow;—vainly I had sought to borrow
From my games surcease of sorrow—sorrow for the lost pork rinds—
For the rare and radiant cusine that the angels call pork rinds—
Nameless here but for all time.

And the silken, sad, uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me—filled me with fantastic terrors never felt in kind;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating,
“’Tis some visitor entreating entrance through my chamber’s blinds—
Some late visitor entreating entrance through my chamber’s blinds;—
This is not about pork rinds.”

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
“Dude,” said I, “or Dudette, truly your forgiveness I imply;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber’s blinds,
That I scarce was sure I heard you”—here I opened wide the blinds;—
Darkness there, front and behind.

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, drooling,
Doubting, finding excuses no one dared to ever find;
But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, “Pork rinds?”
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, “Pork rinds!”—
Merely this so I resigned.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
“Dude!" exclaimed I, “for sure there is something at my window lattice;
Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery unwind—
Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery unwind;—
’Tis the wind, no mastermind!”

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately Raven of the saintly days of hind;
Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber’s blinds—
Perched upon a bar with patterns just above my chamber’s blinds—
Perched, and sat, holding pork rinds.

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
“Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou," I said, “art sure no craven,
Ghastly grim and ancient Raven wandering from the mighty pines—
Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night’s Plutonian vines!”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermind.”

Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning—little relevancy find;
For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
Ever yet was blest with seeing bird above his chamber’s blinds—
Bird or beast upon the sculptured bar above his chamber’s blinds,
With such name as “Nevermind.”

But the Raven, sitting lonely on the patterned bar, spoke only
That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outcry.
Nothing further then he uttered—not a feather then he fluttered—
Till I scarcely more than muttered “Other friends have flown in kind—
On the morrow he will leave me, as my hopes have flown in kind.”
Then the bird said “Nevermind.”

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
“Doubtless,” said I, “what it utters is its only boast and bind
Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful Disaster
Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one word did coined—
Till the dirges of his Hope that melancholy word did coin
Of ‘Never—Nevermind.'"

But the Raven still beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird, and bar and blinds;
Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking
Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird so fine—
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt and ominous bird so fine
Meant in croaking “Nevermind.”

This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my wounded mind;
This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining
On the cushion’s velvet lining that the lamp-light gloated shine,
But whose velvet violet lining with the lamp-light gloating shine,
It shall press, ah, nevermind!

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted lines.
“Wretch," I cried, “thy God hath lent thee—by these angels he hath sent thee
Respite—respite and nepenthe, from thy memories of pork rinds;
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget the lost pork rinds!”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermind.”

“Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil!—prophet still, if bird or devil!—
Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here you swine,
Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted—
On this home by Horror haunted—tell me truly, I inquire—
Is there—is there pork rinds to be had?—tell me—tell me, I inquire!”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermind.”

“Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil—prophet still, if bird or devil!
By that Heaven that bends above us—by that God we both despise—
Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn,
It shall clasp a sainted cuisine that the angels name pork rinds—
Clasp a rare and radiant cuisine that the angels call pork rinds.”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermind.”

“Be that word our sign in parting, bird or fiend!” I shrieked, upstarting—
“Get thee back into the tempest and the Night’s Plutonian vines!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my hungering unbroken!—quit the bar above my blinds!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my blinds!”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermind.”

And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bar with patterns just above my chamber’s blinds;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o’er him streaming throws his shadow on the pine;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies thinking of pork rinds,
Shall be lifted—nevermind!
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