Psychology as Forensic Science from Auguste Dupin to Sherlock Holmes

Poetry: Sherlock Holmes and The Closed Room Murder Mystery:  The Vicar’s Last Homily

The Hound of the Baskervilles Redux

A Versification

 

The Baskerville Estate Near the Moors and Grimpen Mire of Devonshire

(As Envisioned by Nathalia Mikhalchuk, 1907)

 

Chapter One: Introduction to the Moors:“When the wind blows cold o’er the moors at night” (“Tam Pierce” English Folk Song)

 

The skies they were ashen and sober,

The leaves they were withered and sere,

It was night in the lonely October

Of a most immemorial year.

It was hard by the dank goal at Dartmouth,

Near the ghoul haunted mire of fear.

 

Sir Charles walked alone in his garden,

Surrounded by darkness and fog,

Pacing this way and that in the shadows,

And mist from the mire and bog.

 

When out of the haze and the darkness

Snarled a huge and ferocious black hound.

Sir Charles buckled low on the pathway,

And fell to his knees on the ground.

 

He stared at the glow of the creature,

Clutching his chest as he fell,

He gasped, his eyes widened in horror:

“A malevolent monster from Hell.”

 

Chapter Two: 221B Baker Street

 

We sat in our rooms in the twilight,

Our talk had been palsied and sere,

For we knew ‘twas the month of October,

In a most immemorial year.

 

Young Mortimer came to our quarters,

(and Holmes did a trick with his stick),

He begged us to come down to Devon,

And keep his young friend ‘mongst the Quick.

 

Sir Henry was last of his lineage,

He had neither family nor kin,

The Baskerville legacy threatened,

By an evil as fetid as sin.

Holmes could not leave London for Devon,

He suggested I go on my own,

I took the next train from our station,

To this barren, malevolent zone.

 

Chapter 3: Baskerville Hall

 

I arrived at the Hall in a dog cart,

Met by Barrymore, servant in charge.

I saw a good bit of the landscape,

And hiked to the edge of the marge.

 

I saw all the ancestral portraits,

And the family burial tomb,

Where caskets filled with Baskervilles.

Hinted of impending doom.

 

I met the young Mr. Stapleton,

An insect collector indeed,

And his sister the lovely Miss Beryl,

Who seemed like a maiden in need.

 

And a host of mysterious townsfolk,

And people who dwelt on the moor,

The titled, the wealthy, the lonely,

The weird and the sick and the poor.

 

A host of mysterious suspects,

Of pleasant and frightening mien,

I needed my good friend’s assistance,

But Holmes hadn’t come to the scene.

 

Chapter 4: The Moor at Midnight

 

Holmes finally decided to join me,

He had been on the scene all the while,

I admit being slightly offended,

By his dismissive manner and smile.

 

But now we were there near the mansion,

On the evil and threatening bog,

The howl of a hound in the distance,

Was it daemon or specter or dog?

 

And there it was standing before us.

A hound of incredible size,

Aglow with the ensigns of Satan,

And green and ferocious wild eyes.

 

Holmes grabbed for my Webley revolver,

And fired a shot at its head,

The specter seemed injured and angry,

And finally fell to the ground dead.

 

Chapter 5:  Explanation at the Mansion

 

“It was Stapleton’s plan to begin with,

A distant relation himself,

He hoped to inherit the title,

The mansion, the land, and the pelf.

 

“It was he set the stage for the terror

For Sir Charles’ untimely demise

Sent off to the Baskerville cenotaph

And Stapleton would claim the prize.

 

“Just evil and horror and craving,

In a sad quest for power and pelf.

And if you want any more gory details,

You may read Watson’s novel yourself.”

 

 

 

P.S. In addition to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, I’d like to thank Mr. Edgar Allen Poe for his inspiration and assistance.

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Fiction.

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