Thursday, June 28, 2007

Poe, and Hop_Frog

I read this short story by Edgar Allen Poe when I was in third or fifth grade, maybe younger, some age where I could read relatively well. Regardless, it was the first really scary/disturbing story I ever read, and I still have the same images in my mind of the initial reading.

It involves jesters and foolery; specifically, a jester that is in love; more specifically, a jester that's in love and is a DWARF (I'm hitting some treaded territory here).

For brevity, here are the totally amazing concluding paragraphs. For the whole short story, click on the last word in this sentence.

" 'Ah, ha!' said at length the infuriated jester. 'Ah, ha! I begin to see who these people are now!' Here, pretending to scrutinize the king more closely, he held the flambeau to the flaxen coat which enveloped him, and which instantly burst into a sheet of vivid flame. In less than half a minute the whole eight ourang-outangs were blazing fiercely, amid the shrieks of the multitude who gazed at them from below, horror-stricken, and without the power to render them the slightest assistance.

"At length the flames, suddenly increasing in virulence, forced the jester to climb higher up the chain, to be out of their reach; and, as he made this movement, the crowd again sank, for a brief instant, into silence. The dwarf seized his opportunity, and once more spoke:

" 'I now see distinctly' he said, 'what manner of people these maskers are. They are a great king and his seven privy-councillors,–a king who does not scruple to strike a defenceless girl and his seven councillors who abet him in the outrage. As for myself, I am simply Hop-Frog, the jester–and this is my last jest.' "

Another Poe story with a jester, or at least a drunk man dressed as a jester, is the Cask of th...uhhh....can't remember. Something Italian, right? There's your trivia for the day. Look it up.


Blogger Gurrty said...

Amontillado, I love Poe!

7:08 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home