Lafcadio Hearn, aka Koizumi Yakumo

“Some Strange Experiences: The Reminiscences of a Ghost-Seer” by Lafcadio Hearn (1850-1904)

I’m so glad I started reading short stories, thanks to Short Story Monday. These stories allow me to read new to me authors, or authors I’ve heard of but never picked up anything by, without the commitment of a full length book.

The author of the story I read today sounds like he had a fascinating life. From Greece, to Ireland, to the US and finally to Japan, Hearn was a world traveler, writing about the people, places and stories he encountered along the way. It was during his time in Cincinnati, Ohio that he wrote this article, “Some Strange Experiences: The Reminiscences of a Ghost-Seer,” a chat with a girl who sees things other don’t.

“They do say the dead never come back again,” she observed half dreamingly; “but then I have seen such queer things!”

She tells stories about haunted rooms and roads where ghosts roam. She doesn’t seek out the experiences, but still the spirits seem to find her. The descriptions of the people, places and events are vivid and creepy. If you enjoy ghost stories, put this on your to-read list.

“People call me a medium, sometimes, and ask me to sit in dark circles and help to call up spirits. I have always refused—do you wonder at it? I tell you the truth, sir, when I say that far from refusing to leave the dead alone, I would be only too happy if they would leave me alone.”

It was originally published in the Cincinnati Commercial on September 26, 1875, and included in Lafcadio Hearn: American Writings, but you can read it on-line at The Library of America’s site.

John hosts Short Story Monday at The Book Mine Set. Head over there to see what he and others have been reading.

The above is my honest opinion. I am an Amazon associate.


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