Poe Kids

I am related – distantly, by marriage – to Edgar Allan Poe.

I’m not sure how the relationship works. Poe never had kids. But my mother-in-law, sister-in-law, and niece all have Poe as their middle names. And that middle name has been passed down for generations before them.

So we’re related.

Once, when my three kids were little – 8 and under – I wanted them to connect with their literary ancestor. So I read them “Tell Tale Heart” (A guy kills a man whose eye annoys him; he buries the body underneath the floorboards. Brilliant work of fiction. Brilliant) By the time I finished reading it, my two daughters were in tears, clinging to my husband.

This is what happens when your mother is an English teacher and your father is distantly related to Edgar Allan Poe.

Moral of the story: Reading stories about deranged psychopaths to small children is not as good an idea as you’d think.

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