Childhood Innocence in House of Leaves

In House of Leaves, the characters of Tom, Daisy, and Johnny can be connected through their childhood innocence. Poe’s album Haunted directly helps us find a link with the characters with her songs Dear Johnny, Lemon Meringue, and Spanish Doll. Each song helps us understand each character better than how they are just represented in the book. For example, Dear Johnny is a short song with only the lyrics “Johnny dear don’t be afraid. I will keep your secret safe. Bring me to the blind man who, lost you in his house of blue”. The lyrics have a motherly tone to them, with the use of Johnny instead of John and with the reassurance that there is no need to be afraid. It also makes a direct reference to Zampano with the blind man lyric. Tom’s mention of lemon meringue in House of Leaves is mirrored in the song Lemon Meringue by Poe, which talks about life as being bitter and how there must be a way to make is sweeter. Tom gets along especially well with Daisy and Chad in House of Leaves and always is at odds with his brother. Tom talks about how he would love some lemon meringue and he also performs shadow puppets with his hands on the walls for the children. Daisy, in House of Leaves, is not afraid of the house. Her and Chad run through it and play hide and seek, but she does have a Spanish doll which helps her feel safe. Beginning with the first line of Poe’s song Spanish Doll, she sings of Daisy from her perspective. The line is “this place feels so unfamiliar, and yet I know it well”. This is about the house and ever since the phenomena of the closet and hallway, the house is beginning to change into something Daisy considers foreign to her understanding. Although Johnny, Tom, and Daisy all exist in either a different time or are of a different age, they are all connected through the house and their childlike innocence.

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Look at me! – Explanation Post

Frankenstein’s monster is a very relatable character and I wanted to write a poem containing only questions about the monster’s creation, except for the last line, which is a command to Victor. Humanity always asks questions about the purpose of their existence and the meaning of life and I believe Shelley was mirroring this in her book. While reading Frankenstein, I felt as if this story could have been an epic poem about the rise and fall of a man who accomplished a remarkable feat but allowed the feat to consume him and all those closest to him. I really loved the idea of converting this to poetry that I decided to do this myself. I also wrote about my favorite part of the book, which is when Victor and his monster speak to each other for the first time. These moments of them together are so powerful that I wanted to sum them up in a small poem. The monster has only questions and wants acceptance from those around him. But don’t we all?

Look at me!

Why was I created?

For amusement?

Was I created out of boredom?

Can you not answer my questions?

Are you too afraid?

Do you think I will hurt you?

Can’t you see all I want are answers?

Isn’t that what everyone wants?

Do you not think I am only human doubting my existence?

Do you want me to end it all?

End you?

End me?

Did you know I could?

Did you know I could end you with a finger?

Are you ashamed?

What have I done to deserve this isolation?

This marginalization?

Is there in truth no beauty?

Is my appearance the deciding factor of my loneliness?

Are all humans so shallow?

Why do you insist on silence, Creator?

Can you not see you are my only god?

Do you want to be my only god?

Is this too much for you to handle?

Look at me!

Explanation Post: William in the Woods

When reading the part in Frankenstein when Victor discovers William has been murdered, I wanted to know exactly what happened to him. I wanted to be told how he felt before he died, what he thought before he died, and what he saw before he died. I find it intriguing to see the view of the victim before his/her end. I wanted to write what I imagined happened to him. I wrote my piece in the first person because I wanted to explain what happened through the eyes of the murdered. I wrote that Frankenstein’s monster killed William because I do not believe Justine performed the horrific act and it also made sense to me. The monster is just confused and trying to make sense of everything and everyone around him. I wanted to leave it up to the reader to decide if the monster meant to kill William or if he was only trying to seek his help.

William in the Woods

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It’s very cold. I lost Elizabeth quite a while ago. It’s slowly getting darker and darker, the sun is beginning to hide behind the rolling hills. I try not to panic, I’m sure my family is out here looking for me. The trees tower above me and I cannot help but feel frightened. All the noises of forest scare me. I hear movement all around. The wind cruising along the leaves, or the animals trampling fallen leaves on the forest floor. I do not know what to think. I try to think comforting thoughts, such as being held by Elizabeth or being right beside my father. But the forest is growing louder, and with it, I grow more worried. I do not know how to survive in the forest alone, I’m only a child that wanted to play a harmless game. Now I am hopelessly lost. These towering trees all look the same and the ground is damp and brown.

Then all of a sudden, I hear something. It is footsteps, but not that of an animal. No, these are heavier. A human’s footsteps. Elizabeth, I’m sure it is! I hear them from behind and turn around to face my rescuer.

It’s no one I recognize. It’s no one anyone would recognize. I back away in horror. What in God’s name is in front of me? I don’t know what to do. I don’t know if it is friend or foe. I run. I cannot help it, I am only a child. I run hard as fast as I can when I hear a voice yell out, “William!” It sounds like Justine’s voice. It’s coming from ahead of me but still sounds far away. I keep running when I am snatched up from behind. Whatever it is is strong and pulls me down behind some trees. I look into it’s eyes but only for a second. The last thing I remember is that his eyes are full of pain. Then everything goes black.