raucous laughs

Hey, friends!

This week’s poem is a bit of an homage to EAP, of course the incomparable, Edgar Allan Poe.

His gothic horror style of writing – both in poetry and short stories – was groundbreaking and controversial for its day, setting the stage for future generations of writers focused around the macabre, psychological, even “demoniac” (said Walt Whitman) themes Poe explored.

Poetry was his first love. And he was a firmly intentional literary formalist, believing very much in the effects of poetic stylings and devices, and their impact upon the reader – alliteration, rhyme, euphony – and the mastery of the poet to create that emotional heft and resonance through style.

I, for one, deeply admire the quasi-Machiavellian genius involved. So, in honor of Poe, this dark new poem attempts to honor that commitment to poetic structure.

And perhaps toy with it (and you, the reader) by deconstructing it, as you’ll hopefully note through the variance in rhyme schemes from stanza to stanza… ’twas my own amateur (and nerdy) attempt to create discord and dissonance and agitation with those varying atonal rhythms. In addition to some clearly dark, surreal subject matter.

I had a lot of fun writing this poem. Hope you like it! Please let me know what you think – and feel – in the Comments Section below.

-PS Conway ☘ ☘ ☘

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Please listen to this brilliant but bone-chilling narration by my friend Simon Howard on Twitter.

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raucous laughs

midnight stroll through misty graveyard

distant church bells toll night’s power

moonbeams dappled cast shadows dour

across gray headstones pale and scarred

upon the cross which marks your rest

feathery ebon raiment dressed

cling three crows in murderous black

to croak dark spells in clicks-n-clacks

a path is etched where ground fog parts

beckons me to approach your rood

bewitched am i by pernicious arts

beady eyes fix intent and lewd

such gloom besets a mighty pall

unto my knees like prayer i fall

the corvids croak together, “REST!”

crawl in the grave at their behest

for on the cross my name was set

this earth turned fresh for me was meant

resigned to fate my soul thus spent

their raucous laughs… my final breath


  1. I hope that a rook of crows will let me know when my time is come and I wish for my own raucous laughter in the end. But why do I keep reading “groundhog farts” instead of “ground fog parts”? This is really a problem for me.

  2. To write in someone else’s style or genre can be great fun. I once had an A4 sized notebook with hundreds of such efforts (Shakespearean sonnets, Yeatsian ditty’s et al) it when I got stuck after only 14/15 lines ala Dylan Thomas I became frustrated and dispirited. I threw the book into the angry Bay of Biscay. I subsequently learned that Thomas agonised a full week over one line and could spend a month or more on just one flawless poem…’‘twas too late for me! I stopped writing verse for 30years…woe is me!

    1. Tom – 30 years! Omg Nooooo!!! Interestingly, I just returned to writing after 25 years in 2020… but the backstory isn’t half as interesting…. Had kids immediately, needed money, and life just “took over.” Either way, so glad to be back and enjoying my first love again. Speaking of sonnets… check out my relatively recent attempt at one. Love to hear your thoughts….

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