The Raven

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The Raven

BY EDGAR ALLAN POE

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore—
    While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
“’Tis some visitor,” I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door—
            Only this and nothing more.”
    Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December;
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
    Eagerly I wished the morrow;—vainly I had sought to borrow
    From my books surcease of sorrow—sorrow for the lost Lenore—
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore—
            Nameless here for evermore.
    And the silken, sad, uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me—filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
    So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating
    “’Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door—
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door;—
            This it is and nothing more.”
    Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
“Sir,” said I, “or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
    But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
    And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you”—here I opened wide the door;—
            Darkness there and nothing more.
    Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before;
    But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token,
    And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, “Lenore?”
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, “Lenore!”—
            Merely this and nothing more.
    Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
    “Surely,” said I, “surely that is something at my window lattice;
      Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore—
Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore;—
            ’Tis the wind and nothing more!”
    Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately Raven of the saintly days of yore;
    Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
    But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door—
Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door—
            Perched, and sat, and nothing more.
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
“Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,” I said, “art sure no craven,
Ghastly grim and ancient Raven wandering from the Nightly shore—
Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night’s Plutonian shore!”
            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
    Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning—little relevancy bore;
    For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
    Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door—
Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door,
            With such name as “Nevermore.”
    But the Raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only
That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.
    Nothing farther then he uttered—not a feather then he fluttered—
    Till I scarcely more than muttered “Other friends have flown before—
On the morrow he will leave me, as my Hopes have flown before.”
            Then the bird said “Nevermore.”
    Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
“Doubtless,” said I, “what it utters is its only stock and store
    Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful Disaster
    Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore—
Till the dirges of his Hope that melancholy burden bore
            Of ‘Never—nevermore’.”
    But the Raven still beguiling all my fancy into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird, and bust and door;
    Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking
    Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore—
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore
            Meant in croaking “Nevermore.”
    This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom’s core;
    This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining
    On the cushion’s velvet lining that the lamp-light gloated o’er,
But whose velvet-violet lining with the lamp-light gloating o’er,
She shall press, ah, nevermore!
    Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor.
    “Wretch,” I cried, “thy God hath lent thee—by these angels he hath sent thee
    Respite—respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore;
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget this lost Lenore!”
            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
    “Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil!—prophet still, if bird or devil!—
Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
    Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted—
    On this home by Horror haunted—tell me truly, I implore—
Is there—is there balm in Gilead?—tell me—tell me, I implore!”
            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
    “Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil!—prophet still, if bird or devil!
By that Heaven that bends above us—by that God we both adore—
    Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn,
    It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels name Lenore—
Clasp a rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore.”
            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
    “Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!” I shrieked, upstarting—
“Get thee back into the tempest and the Night’s Plutonian shore!
    Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
    Leave my loneliness unbroken!—quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!”
            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
    And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
    And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming,
    And the lamp-light o’er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
            Shall be lifted—nevermore!

I absolutely love Edgar Allan Poe, this being one of my favorite poems of his. He has a way of really showing emotion, and patterns, and rhyming in just the right places! Poems that tell the reader a story are, in my opinion, the best poems out there. This is a strong example of that style of poem.

 

picture from Pixabay CC0

Three Must-Sees in America

Great culture, beautiful sights, and memorable experiences; all these found in the good ‘ol USA. There’s something for everyone here! Whether you’re a photographer, thrill-seeker, or even just a simple tourist, you’ll enjoy these next 3 places.

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1. Universal Studios Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA

Thrilling rides, great picture taking spots, and, of course, a real working movie studio are found here. A fantastic family vacation! There’s fun for the whole family, from grandparents to your youngest cousin.

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2. The Seattle Aquarium, Seattle, WA

Everyone loves aquariums! At The Seattle Aquarium they have it all, from tiny baby sea turtles to huge sharks!

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3. The US Capitol, Washington, DC

How could you go to the US without visiting the capitol? In one of the most famous tourist attractions of America you can experience detailed tours, seeing cool artifacts, and much more!

 

All pictures from Pixabay CC0

President Lamar, Sam Houston, and… Donald Trump?

Let’s get down to business. What we’re learning in history… It’s really stupid.

Lamar vs Houston. Seems kind of alright… Right? No. It’s awful. If you ever learned Texas History, or are learning it right now, you probably know about how stupid Lamar was.

Continuously making awful decisions, spending all our money, causing problems and debt. Literally everything Houston fixed, Lamar ruined again. How did he even get elected in the first place?

Another thing to think about is how this is very similar to our situation in in America today.

For example, Donald Trump. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one that thinks he’s going to ruin our country. I mean come on, if I had a dollar every time Donald Trump said something dumb, I would have a small loan of a million dollars. Obama fixed everything, and then Trump is going to ruin everything again. VERY smiler to Lamar and Houston. This connection actually helps me understand the subject more, and I hope it might help you too.

Anyway, I just wanted to get that out. Bye everyone.

The Phantom’s Lair

Thread wove through fabric, a dark figure’s hands maneuvering a needle delicately.

A lone sound could be heard in the cave, low quiet, and sweet. The masked creature wove the thread in time to his tune, back and forth, a steady rhythm being maintained. Water dripped onto it’s head, black as night in the badly lit room.

The creature sighed, rising to his feet. Shoes dragged lazily through the mud, a cacophony of crunches created by the bones lying forgotten on the ground.

A single candle sat in the center of the not so roomy “living” space. The flame wavered, not so much due to some sort of breeze, but to the cold aura radiating off the man cloaked in darkness. The man frowned, sending the candle flying into the black lake with a wave of his hand. He replaced it with an identical candle, lighting it and watching it for a few moments before turning to look at his beloved doll.

“Oh Christine… soon you’ll be mine…” muttered the Phantom of the Opera, walking back to his doll, caressing it’s face lovingly. “Soon..”

Author’s note: Honestly, I’m not too happy with this writing. I’m posting it in hopes that those of you reading will give me some constructive criticism so I can improve it. I might be posting a revised version next week, so stay tuned for that! Anyway, this is me, Karena, signing off for now. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed!!

My 2015 Halloween

My Halloween
By Karena Arce

This year’s Halloween was probably the best Halloween I have ever experienced. Mainly because this year, me and my closest group of friends went to comic con.

I woke up at 4 am that day, being so eager to get in costume and g to the con. My friend had slept over that night so we could get ready easier (she was helping with my makeup), and boy was she mad when I started screaming at 4 in the morning. Try as I did, I didn’t manage to wake her up until 8. We ate breakfast, got ready, and met up with everybody else.

As soon as everyone got in the van, we were off. the car ride was just us screaming the lyrics of our favorite anime openings, but I’m not complaining, Attack on Titan, Tokyo Ghoul, the list could go on for ages. The most exciting part of the ride was seeing a horde of people in costume walking towards the convention center.

Let’s just say, we may have screamed at them a tiny bit. Ok a lot. But it’s all good because they screamed right back.

Once we actually got there, we rushed through registration, and barreled towards to con. It was huge. Tons of people walked around, fully in costume, crowding around stands selling merchandise. I almost cried, seeing two people cosplaying as my two favorite characters. We took pictures with what seemed like a billion people. After we had met almost everyone at the con, we began to shop.

Plushies, prints, t-shirts, they had it all. When I got home, I found I had spent over $100! That… was not a happy conversation with my mom. I got around 10 prints and hung them all on my wall. My friends were even more extravagant than me. One bought a plushie the size of me!

Afterwards, we went home, trick or treated, and finished off the day with our favorite movie. Overall, it was definitely a night to remember.

And we are already planning our next con in February.

And then another in June.

And ANOTHER in October…

Note: I had meant to post this a long time ago but I just never got around to it. Anyway, thanks for reading!

Why Not Having DVR is Horrible

So my family just recently took away DVR, or in other words, I can’t prerecord or record any shows or movies. Yeah. My frustration right now is insane. If you watch Gravity Falls you’ll understand why.

In the show Gravity Falls, the creator, Alex Hirsch, is ending the series. So the last few episodes have been extremely important and action filled. And well… I’ve missed them. All of them. All thanks to my bus getting to my house far after the episode has started. I don’t even have the ability to prerecord it anymore! The next episode, the last one, is coming out in February and there is no way I’m going to be able to watch it unless I go back and watch the 8 or so episodes I’ve missed. Luckily, one of my friends has recorded the whole thing so I’ll be able to watch it with her.

Steven Universe too! Currently, it’s Steven’s Birthday Week so there are new episodes coming out everyday and thankfully, my bus comes right in time for me to be able to watch them. If my bus came any later, and I happened to miss an episode, I would probably scream.

It’s just so frustrating that I have no control over it! Ok, rant over, thanks for reading if you got through the whole thing!

Texas: How it was Almost a Complete Spanish Failure

Texas: How it Was Almost a Complete Spanish Failure
By Karena Arce
(Ignore the doc and BE notes, they were for reference)
Isn’t it weird to think that the very place we live in today was almost a giant mistake? Why though? During the 1500s through the 1800s the Spanish were attempting the settlement of Texas. In 1519 they had seen the shores of Texas. In fact, they were the first white people in Texas!(B.E) Then, they began to try and settle the land. They had a plan to convert the natives to the Christian religion, making the Spanish settlers feel safer.(B.E) This would hopefully increase the population and make settlement easier. Their plan nearly failed. So why? Why did Texas almost fail as a Spanish colony? Not fail as in failing a test, but fail as in not being able to settle the new world the Spanish had taken such an interest in? Sure it worked out in the end, but what made the journey to success so difficult?

The geography was a big influence on this near mistake of a colony. There were deserts, shallow waters preventing any boats or other water vessels from coming to the shores of Texas, and many other obstacles.(doc.A) The deserts in the area prevented trade and transport between Mexico City and the missions. (doc.A) Another thing preventing this was The Texas Triangle, which was very dry and desolate.(doc.A) No people, no way of help if anything goes wrong in the process of transport. Not having access to ports prevented water travel and transport which was most likely a big blow for the Spanish. Imagine trying to get into a room with no doors!(doc.A)

Population was a giant obstacle in the process of settling Texas. If you don’t have a large population you can’t govern properly. It’d be like trying to win a horse race with no horse. The population was dropping as the years went on, and wasn’t starting at a ideal number either. (doc.B) In the year 1777 the total civilian and military population was 2,212 and the mission indians and friars made up a 809 population.(doc.B) All together it added up to 3,022 people. The Spanish still wanted to increase that number. They continued their missions plan and in 1790 while the civilian and military population raised to 2,995 the mission indian and friar population dropped to 629.(doc.B) Which is actually good since the indians and mission friars would (presumably) have become part of the civilian and military population. Though that would also mean they were running out of Natives to convert. The total population in 1790 raised the 3,624 people which was a good success but wasn’t exactly ideal.(doc.B) All of these figures are coming from the main 3 missions: Bejar (San Antonio), La Bahia (Goliad), and Nacogdoches.(doc.B) The mission of Nacogdoches was probably the least successful because in 1777 through 1773 (they had closed the mission due to inactivity) they didn’t have a single Indian that was being converted, according to a letter on September 8, 1767.(doc.C) Another letter was found that dated to October 9,1767 reporting that they had gone to the Mission of Nuestra Senor de la Luz and found the same disappointing outcome.(doc.C) The lack of population was a huge blow to the settlement process but there’s still more to the near failure.

You can’t be successful in converting Natives if the Natives won’t cooperate! Two of the most hostile tribes were the Comanche and the Apache.(doc.D) They were continuously attacking in and around San Antonio and La Bahia (Goliad).(doc.D)The Indians attacked not only the settlers, but the mission indians too.(doc.D) Were they acting as if they were traitors? Possibly, people still don’t know. What they do know is that the total estimated Comanche population in Central Texas was 8,000. (doc.D) This would have already been enough to attack successfully but there were also the Apache. This tribe’s number expanded from Texas to New Mexico and Coahuila and was a staggering figure of 15,000.(doc.D) The Spanish were largely outnumbered. These attacks were clearly directed towards the two largest and most successful missions. Again going back to the letters found in the same year, which stated that Nacogdoches and were quite unsuccessful.(doc.C) So why not attack the missions that are actually productive in converting Indians? These two tribes were definitely defiant against the idea of the Spanish converting their kind. Though who wouldn’t be? The Spanish are taking their land, making them believe in stuff they don’t want to believe in, and forcing them to retort to violence.(all docs) Again, this was a pretty big factor in the settlement, probably one of the bigger ones.

These are great reasons as to why Spain almost failed. But if you think about it, they truly made a good effort right? Like sure, there were a couple bumps along the way. Well maybe more than a couple. Though all of this made Texas the place it is today. If it had gone any differently everyone could have all spoken different languages, had a different religion, even lived in different conditions. All of Texas history adds character to the marvelous state. The building blocks if you will. It’s just amazing to think that even after all of that, they continued to try until they pulled it off. They almost quit many times, but did they? No. History repeats itself. The new generations just have to deal with it the way they deal with it. Which is why children learn history. To learn from past mistakes. They’ve definitely learned from the near failure of Texas. Wouldn’t want that repeating itself!

SAI Software: I Want It!

Some of you may know what Paint Tool SAI is. Some may not. SAI is basically the best software for digital art and man do I want it. Of course, I’ll have to get a computer first… But the point is I really want this software. I watch a lot of speed arts on YouTube and a lot of drawing streams on twitch so I know how to use it. I would also have to get a drawing pad to connect to the computer, considering it would be difficult to draw with the mouse. Even though it’s a lot of money, I believe it’s worth it.

When you’re drawing with pencil there’s the chance that it would be your off day. That’s true for me at least. From what I’ve heard a lot of other artists have this problem too! This is surprising since they are all really good, way better than me. Which proves no matter how good you are, you can still make mistakes. I mean, we’re all human right? So the SAI helps in this department. Supposedly at least. I forget who, but one of the artists I watch on twitch said that it’s less likely for her to have a off day using digital means to draw than using pencil. Sure it may be expensive, but I want to start doing commissions, meaning people would purchase my art. So I could make up the money quickly if people bought stuff from me!

My one concern is that I’ll get all the equipment, and be super bad at using it.. But practice makes perfect right? Anyway, that’s one of the top things on MY Christmas list. DON’T YELL AT ME FOR SKIPPING THANKSGIVING I HAVEN’T FORGOTTEN IT LIKE HALF THE WORLD HAS!! So… yeah I really want this tool. It would be nice to get a computer too because right now I’m using my dad’s desktop. Wouldn’t want to install it on his computer and then not be able to get it on my own!

Since I mentioned YouTube and Twitch artists in this post I’ll tell you some of my personal favorites:

On YouTube:
– Bayleejae
– Kiwi Byrd

On Twitch:
-Cheyenneo
-Marshmallowdreamm
-JenGeeBerry
-TheLeadPanda
And so many more great artists. If you are into this kind of content, I would definitely recommend them. Well, that’s it for this post, thanks for reading! Bye guys.

Cats VS Dogs..?

So everyone keeps blogging about picking between cats and dogs but… How do you choose?? I mean sure dogs may be more loyal and active but cats are cuddly and, in my opinion, exactly like me. Extremely lazy. I feel like personally I relate more to cats in the sense that they are always lying around and avoiding my responsibilities. But you have to feel like a dog sometimes too. Jumping off the walls, always hyper, full of energy. We all have a little dog and a little cat in our personalities. So in this blog post, I’m going to try and decide which house pet is “better”.

First, let’s discuss some cats. Furry little felines that are many people’s favorite animal. Cats have been around for a while. They’ve been companions for us since what, ancient Egyptian times? Never the less, they’ve been here a long time. These mammals are adorable and forever sleeping. I’ve never had a cat, but I assume s lot of them are pretty independent. Especially the ones that are used to their owners going to work and school. Though, I can’t generalize all cats because I know that there are some out there who are very active. Take my aunts cat for example. Jasper is always outside. I’m actually surprised he hasn’t run away yet! My aunt lets him out most of the time but in winter, when it’s cold in Denver, it’s not so good for him to be out. Being frozen in the snow.. Doesn’t sound too appealing. Even for a cat like Jasper. But enough about cats, let’s move on to dogs.

Dogs are a “mans best friend”. These loyal companions are a very popular house pet. They’ve been around for quite a while too. Probably more than cats actually. They are bred to be show dogs, hunters, sheep dogs, etc. Again, I’ve never had a dog, but a lot of my friends do. It’s sad, I really want a house pet like a cat or a dog now. But it’s fine because whenever I go to my friends house their dog treats me like a family member. Unless they are a very protective dog, who was bred to be a hunter. In that case… The welcoming isn’t all too pleasant. I still love the furry animals though!

Anyway, I can’t pick. They are both so cute! I’m just glad I’m not being forced to pick. Like society isn’t just like “DOGS OR CATS. CHOOSE NOW.”. Ok well that’s it for this blog post. Just going to casually follow the trend of Cats vs Dogs on this site. Bye!

Thunderstorms Are Mean

Surely I’m not the only one that thinks this.. Right? I hope not.. So I hate thunder. I know that’s really childish but it scares me?? It’s just too loud I don’t know. I guess it’s because I can’t control whether it thunders or not. It’s just so much of a surprise when it happens since the lightening always shows before you can hear the thunder. It’s weird because I love rain and lightening but thunder is just.. No. For example the last time the thunder was really bad I was in Wimberly and it was flooding. I was actually in THE worst flood zone. Such great luck right?

The next school day everyone was talking about what happened in Wimberly and I would just be there. Like hello. I was there. How about you not talk about how horrible it was because I actually know. So that just made me think about the thunder more and it was just a really hard and depressing day.

So now you know how scared I am of thunder. It’s a really bizarre fear for me to have considering I’m a really loud person. I also end up listening to music really loudly in my earbuds so you wouldn’t think I would be so bothered by thunder. I dunno. I didn’t really have that much to write about this week ha. OOPS MY LIFE IS BORING. Anyways bye.