Tales to Warm Your Mind: Ten Whimsically Morbid Short Stories


It appears that on the — — day of — — I am not positive about the date , a vast crowd of people, for purposes not specifically mentioned, were assembled in the great square of the Exchange in the well-conditioned city of Rotterdam.

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The day was warm—unusually so for the season—there was hardly a breath of air stirring; and the multitude were in no bad humor at being now and then besprinkled with friendly showers of momentary duration, that fell from large white masses of cloud which chequered in a fitful manner the blue vault of the firmament. Nevertheless, about noon, a slight but remarkable agitation became apparent in the assembly: The origin of this hubbub soon became sufficiently evident.

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From behind the huge bulk of one of those sharply-defined masses of cloud already mentioned, was seen slowly to emerge into an open area of blue space, a queer, heterogeneous, but apparently solid substance, so oddly shaped, so whimsically put together, as not to be in any manner comprehended, and never to be sufficiently admired, by the host of sturdy burghers who stood open-mouthed below.

What could it be? In the name of all the vrows and devils in Rotterdam, what could it possibly portend?

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No one knew, no one could imagine; no one—not even the burgomaster Mynheer Superbus Von Underduk—had the slightest clew by which to unravel the mystery; so, as nothing more reasonable could be done, every one to a man replaced his pipe carefully in the corner of his mouth, and cocking up his right eye towards the phenomenon, puffed, paused, waddled about, and grunted significantly—then waddled back, grunted, paused, and finally—puffed again.

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About Edgar Allan Poe. Years later, I discovered a tape we had made of the record, and I listened to it constantly. Then, mysteriously, it too disappeared. I went to a couple Irish Rovers concerts and bought several of their albums, but I never was able to locate the coveted album Tales to Warm Your Mind. Then I received a package from my Uncle Dave in the mail for my birthday I believe it was my 16th.

He put them all on a tape for me, and I once again have my first and favorite Irish Rovers album. This time, I will not lose it.

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It was their eighth record, and while some songs appear on other albums, this one itself is unfortunately very hard to find, though with a little searching it is possible to find used copies through the Internet. Of all their albums, it will always be my favorite. Stop, Look, Listen - The song from which the title is taken, and a great way to begin the album. This one has a definite lullabye feel to it, as do many on the album.

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Listen while I tell you tales to warm your mind. Stop, look, listen, see what you can find.

It features Joe on lead vocals, with the others providing full, rich vocals for the chorus. The speaker is a man whose baby was stolen, apparently by faeries, while she was left unattended in a field. The chorus, as far as I can tell, is just nonsense words up until the final declaration: The predominantly light-hearted ballad tells the tale of a mystical rover who spreads love throughout the land.

The narrator urges listeners to keep an eye out for him, and to make an effort to be nice to one another so that he will be encouraged to come back.

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In a way, this song is rather like the Dr. Seuss classic The Lorax , as the protector of an idyllic land vanishes after his land is corrupted, and the only hope of his return is the restoration of the land. Also could probably be read in a religious sense, with the peddler as a Christ-like figure. Bells on his coat and a rangle-tangle kind of grin. It begins with a slow TAPS being played, but the guitar comes in at the end of the intro to set an upbeat tone for the song. At first glance, that is just what it appears to be. The song is centered around a war memorial dedicated to the fallen men of the village.

Near the memorial are an assembly of grizzled old men and bright-eyed lads, and the old men impress upon the children that there is no greater honor than having your name listed in gold on that memorial. Not much to look forward to, if you ask me.

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The names of your fathers who won all the victories gave honor to the village of Brambleshire Wood. And just think how proud we would be if only one day we were able to see your name in gold letters impressively listed on the pillar of marble in Brambleshire Wood.

Accompanied primarily by the guitar and accentuated by violins, the boys take the chorus together and let Will my favorite — I was very sad when he left: Driven by a constant drumbeat, it also features a variety of instruments appropriate to the verse regal horns for the would-be Julius Caesar, operatic warbling for the opera singer, bells for the final verse.

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The choruses grow richer as the song continues, adding more instruments and harmonies. A very entertaining song.