Dream Within A Dream: Trip To Raven Cafe

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“Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.” 
― Edgar Allan PoeThe Raven

Jeremy: My love for the tales and poems of Edgar Allan Poe began at an early age. Throughout my early school years, we were often required to skim only the surface of his works, just hitting the classics like The Fall of the House of Usher, The Tell-Tale Heart, and of course, The Raven. So strong my desire became to continuously re-read these sinister stories of revenge, supernatural occurrences, and the like that it was the first time in my life (I believe I was 13?) that I went out of my way to discover even more material from an author than what was required of me. The more I read, the more my passion for his entire collection of works grew. Ultimately I came to the conclusion that I would continue to be obsessed with this man and his stories for as long as I could still read the pages in front of me. In fact, many years later, my first ever tattoo would pay tribute to this obsession with a portrait tattoo of Poe himself, a raven and sinister house looking on in the background. Naturally, after being informed there was a cafe in Michigan dedicated to all things Poe, I could hardly wait to make the trip up there. Needless to say, I was not disappointed.

Sara: I can't placate exactly when or how old I was, but my very first exposure to Edgar Allan Poe was a recording of Vincent Price reciting The Raven and I was immediately enamored. Later on during my many, many English courses throughout high school and college, his work would come up over and over again, and my classmates and myself always would joke about getting into his mindset when reading his poetry and short stories: inject yourself with copious amounts of caffeine, drugs, and alcohol and write down literally everything that was happening.

When our friend Aaron told us about The Raven Cafe we knew that we had to go. This would also inspire our decision to bring along the camera, in order to document what was sure to be an exciting trip for the coven.

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Jeremy: The Raven Cafe works as both a cafe and bar, serving truly amazing food and drink. Its two story layout consists of a gift shop (where we couldn't pass up leaving without a couple souvenirs), an extensive library with books ranging from Dracula all the way to Goosebumps, the aforementioned bar, and plenty of seating for such a small location. I know it sounds like I'm writing a enamored Yelp review, but if I was ever bothered to be that guy, this would be the place for it; it was everything I could have hoped for and more. Located in Port Huron, MI, this becomes more of a day trip for us in Ferndale, MI rather than a local cafe that could be visited at will. But the trip was more than worth it, and just proved to amplify my drive to give the tales of Poe another read through. It's just a damn shame it isn't close to home, as I've yet to find a place more ideal to hang out and have far too many coffees than  a cafe housing and inspired by the works of one of my favorite authors of all time.

Sara: Even though Ferndale, Detroit, and it's surrounding areas have plenty of aesthetically-pleasing bars and coffee shops that I absolutely adore, the Raven Cafe is just so completely unique. It's like someone took all of my favorite books out of a library, mixed it with some nerdy art, threw in fancy cocktails that could rival a speakeasy, paired with some of the most fucking delicious soups, and sandwiches imaginable.

We ate, we drank, we took photos, and we camped out on a huge, comfy couch and played Slasher Cards (a horror trivia game) for hours and I could have honestly stayed there all evening. Although it saddens me that it is well over an hour away, I am sure my wallet is pretty damn thankful. Not to mention if the Raven Cafe were in Ferndale, Detroit, Royal Oak, or Hazel Park, it would be fucking packed all the god damn time. It is sort of a blessing that it is further away, the trips out will be better planned and savored.

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Jeremy: It's amazing to discover that dedication to certain literature can still persist after all this time, and The Raven Cafe is a testament to that. I personally feel i've fallen off the grid with reading, stuck in a world so focused on what can be offered digitally. But this trip has ultimately given me the push I needed to rediscover some classic scary stories. They are, after all, where it all began for me. And who knows, maybe this will all lead to even more Poe related content? But first, an announcement:

Sara: We added a group to our Facebook page, Foxy Cat Coven, called Coven Creeps! It is a closed group, but anyone can join. It is a place for all things horror, spooky, and really odd in general. We currently have a thread going with favorite creepy/atmospheric songs, and another with personal horror stories. If you would like to join, feel free to send a request and we will add you!  

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All photos by Foxy Cat Coven 

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