On a third grade field trip, Bernadette experienced three events that changed her life forever. She heard “The Raven” recited by a museum volunteer, saw a realistic forgery copy of “Annabel Lee” as if done by the master’s own hand, and in a daguerreotype where Poe’s eyes seemed to dominate his image, she pondered the man’s soul. Subsequently developing a mad crush on the poet, and resolving to tread in the footsteps of her beloved, Bernadette began to write her own poetry about lost love, insanity and death. Despite the consternation of her hippie mother, a woman who insisted on painting the family refrigerator turquoise, and opening all windows in her daughter’s room, so that everything was enveloped in the most cheerful sunlight, Bernadette prevailed in her pursuit of Poe. She won her first poetry contest at the end of that third school year with an ode entitled “Loneliness”, about a fictional girl named Molly whose lover found her body washed up on some desolate seashore.
Bernadette still has a mad crush on Poe, gets her inspiration from picnics in cemeteries, and continues to write stories that dabble with, and dance in the darkness.