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The Poems of Robert E. Howard examined for Poetry Month

Many readers of Conan the Barbarian will understand the lure of Robert E. Howard’s writing. Daring rescues, robbing forgotten tombs and walking forbidden paths are the staple of every Conan story, and many of Howard’s other adventure heroes.

Howard’s writing career began in the 1920s and ended in 1936. He wrote for pulp magazines of the day, writing stories, poems and essays on the craft.

Poetry from the creator of Conan and Solomon Kane?

Howard’s poems usually began a new chapter within each tale, creating a sense of mood.

Forbidden Magic

There came to me a Man one summer night,
when all the world lay silent in the stars
and moonlight crossed my room with ghostly bars.
He whispered hints of weird, unhallowed sight;
I followed – then in waves of spectral light
mounted the shimmery ladders of my soul
where moon-pale spiders, huge as dragons, stole –
great forms like moths, with wings of wispy white.

Howard’s style of poetry mirrors his style of writing. For example his stories are lyrical, like they were written to be read aloud, listening for both meaning and sound.

Much like what is called a lay, long poems written during the late dark ages until the middle ages.

Howard’s poems are a powerful example of his mental outlook professionally and personally. His poetry is charged with both triumph and tragedy, igniting and stoking the imagination unlike any other author.

Brooding, dark and honest, while bittersweet; the poetry of Robert E. Howard.

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