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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 12:18 pm:   

Just been reading about this fascinating woman's life. I really like her without having read much more than a couple of poems, am interested in her for herself, but today it hit me in a stupid hollywood way that 'What if she was a vampire?'. It's a cheap observation but made me think of the concept of genre, why it adds things to basic ideas. I'd love to see a book written on Emily's life, even a film, but why or how would her being a vampire be done without pissing on the whole of herself and her legacy? I think the way to do it would to not say SHE was a vampire but that there was one who lived like her. I bet it could be done well, beautifully, poetically. I think to approach the stalwarts of the genre we have to do it sideways, remove things like fear and horror from the mix.
Also, Emily's situation actually ties in with the concept of vampirism; a close friend said of the two times he met her that she 'sucked out' his life energy like no one else he had ever known. Her isolation touches on the sense of immortality being not a reality but a sense, the sense of being alone forever. They don't live forever, they just feel like they do. This is where the concept of vampirism must have its roots, somewhere in these feelings.
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 12:32 pm:   

Right...
http://chicagomammals.com/amherst.htm
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Steve Jensen (Stevej)
Username: Stevej

Registered: 07-2009
Posted From: 82.0.77.233
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 12:34 pm:   

Interesting idea, Tony. :-)

This, from Camille Paglia's superb Sexual Personae: Art and Decadence from Nefertiti to Emily Dickinson:

'Emily Dickinson is the female Sade, and her poems are the prison dreams of a self-incarcerated, sadmomasochistic imaginist. When she is rescued from American Studies departments and juxtaposed with Dante and Baudelaire, her barbarities and diabolical acts of will become glaringly apparent. Dickinson inherits through Blake the rape cycle of 'The Faerie Queene'. Blake and Spenser are her allies in helping pagan Coleridge defeat Protestant Wordsworth.'
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Carolinec (Carolinec)
Username: Carolinec

Registered: 06-2009
Posted From: 82.38.75.85
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 01:45 pm:   

I'm afraid I don't know who you're talking about, but on the subject of "what if someone like that was a vampire?", I particularly enjoyed the film "Shadow of the Vampire" based on the premise that the actor who played Nosferatu (forgive me, brain's not too good and I can't recall his name offhand - too busy to look it up) was a vampire.
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 01:47 pm:   

The observations in this second post are quite beautiful.
http://www.americanpoems.com/poets/emilydickinson/10210
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Weber_gregston (Weber_gregston)
Username: Weber_gregston

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 194.176.105.47
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 02:12 pm:   

Emily Dickenson where are you? Herman Melville called your name in his sleep last night.


ten points to the first person who can tell me where that comes from?
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Steve Jensen (Stevej)
Username: Stevej

Registered: 07-2009
Posted From: 82.0.77.233
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 02:24 pm:   

I cheated, Weber It's Ray Bradbury, apparently. In my defence, it was such a curious quote that I wanted to find out who said/wrote it so I dashed off to Google.
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Weber_gregston (Weber_gregston)
Username: Weber_gregston

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 194.176.105.47
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 02:29 pm:   

What book does it come from?
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 02:56 pm:   

It's the title of a poem he wrote.
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Weber_gregston (Weber_gregston)
Username: Weber_gregston

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 194.176.105.47
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 03:00 pm:   

It's not actually. I got it a bit wrong. It should be

Emily Dickinson where are you, Herman Melville called your name last night in his sleep"

But I was quoting it from memory so I can be forgiven - probably.

It's in the very fine collection of poems - When Elephants Last in the Dooryard Bloomed - possibly one of the more rare Ray Bradbury books in my collection.

No points to anyone for cheating.
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Steve Jensen (Stevej)
Username: Stevej

Registered: 07-2009
Posted From: 82.0.77.233
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 03:30 pm:   

No points to anyone for cheating.

Damn.
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 03:58 pm:   

Research isn't cheating.
But back to Emily, who I feel I've spent a day with.
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Weber_gregston (Weber_gregston)
Username: Weber_gregston

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 194.176.105.47
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 04:54 pm:   

"Research isn't cheating. "

Tell that to A'level examiners while you're sat there with your textbook in the exam.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.5.1.140
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 05:35 pm:   

I like this idea Tony - it's creepy and yet imaginatively illuminating - we get an insight about Ms. Emily, that is wholly fabricated, but somehow makes a surreal kind of sense - this is what the best imaginative literature does, that plays around with historical events.

Emily's poems are draining - their intensity is overwhelming much of the time - when I read her, it's as if she's sat down in my skull, and I'm now thinking the thoughts I'm reading. She's borderline a horror writer anyway, much of her poems deal with a morbid otherworldlyness, death and dying and the grave. To spend a day with Emily Dickinson, Tony, can't be a completely happy day, I'd imagine....
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 05:53 pm:   

Weber - that process is how we live, tho, not get checked.

Craig; this idea really is kicking about for me now. My big feeling is that Emily the Vampire made a sacrifice, and that the sacrifice was herself.
You've heard of her 'Master'? The chap many people think was fabricated? She wrote apparently searingly intimate letters and poems to him. This would be a great thing to address. I love the fact that when she died she just sort of gave up the ghost and fainted.
My next idea? Richard Linklater's The Beasts, a campus romance version of Planet of the Apes, an emo type guy falling for a young Zira.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.5.1.140
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 06:02 pm:   

Didn't she also essentially live upstairs, never sort of left her room? She looks like a vampire in the few pictures of her, too.

Good stuff. Albeit, if the rest of the world is like Caroline, Tony - never having heard of Emily Dickinson... sigh....

(Caroline ---> )
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 06:36 pm:   

But they ARE into edgy vampire movies...
I for one also think there wouldn't be a drop of blood in it.
:-(
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 06:37 pm:   

BTW her house was beautiful.
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 06:38 pm:   

Hey; wouldn't In The Night Garden be a great title?
( to all us brits)
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 06:40 pm:   

I LIKE a look of agony,
Because I know it ís true;
Men do not sham convulsion,
Nor simulate a throe.

The eyes glaze once, and that is death.
Impossible to feign
The beads upon the forehead
By homely anguish strung.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.5.1.140
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 06:45 pm:   

Wow... Emily, you dirty bird, you!
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 07:05 pm:   

I know.
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 07:21 pm:   

And written about 150 years ago.
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Mark_lynch (Mark_lynch)
Username: Mark_lynch

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 217.171.129.68
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 08:48 pm:   

There's a bunch of books coming out on the back of the success of Pride and Prejudie and Zombies. Sense and Sensibility and Sea Serpents or something is one. I'm sure one probably has Mr Darcy as a vampire, too.
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Carolinec (Carolinec)
Username: Carolinec

Registered: 06-2009
Posted From: 82.38.75.85
Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 10:11 pm:   

>>Albeit, if the rest of the world is like Caroline, Tony - never having heard of Emily Dickinson... sigh....

(Caroline ---> )<<

Sorry, folks, but if she was a poet that explains my ignorance .... I hate poetry!

I'll have to google her now though, just to find out ...
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Thursday, September 24, 2009 - 12:24 am:   

Mark - one does.
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Steve Jensen (Stevej)
Username: Stevej

Registered: 07-2009
Posted From: 82.0.77.233
Posted on Thursday, September 24, 2009 - 12:51 pm:   

Interesting verse from perhaps Emily's best-known poem:

Because I could not stop for Death
He kindly stopped for me
The Carriage held but just Ourselves
And Immortality.
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Joel (Joel)
Username: Joel

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 217.37.199.45
Posted on Thursday, September 24, 2009 - 02:12 pm:   

There's a GREAT short story by Pete Crowther in which he explores the premise that the 1940s poet Weldon Kees was the serial victim of a vampire. Read the story... and read Weldon Kees, he's amazing.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.4.255.217
Posted on Thursday, September 24, 2009 - 04:35 pm:   

Emily Dickinson's vengeful ghost is behind the premature deaths of all the great American poets that come after her... she pushes Hart Crane off the boat... and Randall Jarrell in front of the speeding car... she beckons Sylvia Plath into the oven... she pours Anne Sexton a drink, and turns on her motorcar... every poet who achieves great sublimity, she arrives to destroy, in her quenchless demonic jealously... and so, now it's time for Emily's awful spirit to rise up and go after....
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.108.128
Posted on Thursday, September 24, 2009 - 05:40 pm:   

Yes; Emily didn't die all those years ago, just, to quote herself, 'feigned' it.

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