24 January 2012

Unselfish and Self-Sacrificing Love

From my infancy I was noted for the docility and humanity of my disposition. My tenderness of heart was even so conspicuous as to make me the jest of my companions. I was especially fond of animals, and was indulged by my parents with a great variety of pets. With these I spent most of my time, and never was so happy as when feeding and caressing them.

This peculiarity of character grew with my growth, and in my manhood, I derived from it one of my principal sources of pleasure. To those who have cherished an affection for a faithful and sagacious dog, I need hardly be at the trouble of explaining the nature or the intensity of the gratification thus derivable. There is something in the unselfish and self-sacrificing love of a brute, which goes directly to the heart of him who has had frequent occasion to test the paltry friendship and gossamer fidelity of mere Man.

Edgar Allan Poe, The Black Cat

Poster: Théophile Alexandre Steinlen (1859–1923)

Gossamer: adj; flimsy, insubstantial, like the texture of cobwebs


  1. I had no idea there was such a word as "derivable." I got into Edgar Allan Poe when I was in high school, but have not read this one. I might have to go find it! The snippet certainly made me curious!

  2. Thanks for stopping by, Lara. This is a great short story and one of my favorite. You should definitely check it out, you won't be disappointed.

  3. Thanks for the twitter follow, Gary. When I saw your profile, I thought I'd drop in - New Orleans hooked me - (crime in NO? Nah, dat would never happen, LOL) Anyway, looking forward to your book.

  4. Thanks for signing up Kittie. A lot of folks from Louisiana are going to get advance copies--you never know.


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