We Need To Talk About How Short They Made Edgar Allan Poe In That Statue


1513779_10153305633303352_6343464705008368104_nCharlie Greenwald

Lion’s Tooth Co-Founder

Everybody knows the figurine I’m talking about – it is right by Emerson’s campus. If you don’t know it, you should walk down towards Boloco and have a look. The bronze-based figure holding a briefcase with a flying raven and papers blowing everywhere represents the tortured author returning to Boston, his birthplace. It’s a nice tribute, paying homage to one of his classic stories, and the visual representation of the writer is an uncanny resemblance.

Having said that, the height of Poe in the effigy is disappointing. And we need to talk about it.

Poe was only listed as 5 feet 8 inches tall, and the statue doesn’t go any higher. Artist Stefanie Rocknak, who was selected to sculpt Poe by the Edgar Allan Poe Foundation of Boston, wanted to keep things realistic and life-size. How dare she. Poe, a gargantuan figure of macabre literature and practically the inventor of detective fiction, deserves to be at least a foot taller in his carving.

To recreate him as his actual height is extremely disappointing. I mean, look at that Raven. That’s not the real size of a Raven. Ravens are not that big. The artist made the Raven larger than life – and made Poe fit-to-scale. Is this a fitting tribute to Boston’s greatest author? No, I say! Our children’s children will continue to discuss “The Cask of Amontillado” in school for generations to come, and yet most people who visit his statue on the Boston Commons are staring down at it? Please.

So I’m asking YOU to help me create awareness. Do we want this pint-sized statue to stay this small forever? Would Poe’s parents be proud to see this puny life-size interpretation, or would they rather have seen Poe looming large over his audience? Well, Poe’s relationship with his parents wasn’t good, but still! They would want a bigger statue.

The real-life Poe tragically died when he was just 40 years old in Baltimore, but what’s even more tragic is the fact that Boston’s homage to him isn’t more exciting and colossal. Let’s try and raise awareness of this travesty, so that we might have a more fitting statue someday.

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