To my Mother,
who believed in me as a writer
but never saw me published.
My Dear Eben,
However bizarre this story may seem, I assure you every word is the truth. My faculties are still acutely sane, and the details of my extraordinary adventure are etched indelibly upon my mind. It is only now in the winter of my life that I feel compelled to share this story with my son. Your mother and I agreed that you are ready. You see, I fear the Almighty will soon see fit to take my soul into his own for the final time and forever silence the account of one mortal’s journey through the Otherworld of the Dead.
“Now comes the mystery.”
Henry Ward Beecher
“They groaned, they stirred, they all uprose,
Nor spake, nor moved their eyes;
It had been strange, even in a dream,
To have seen those dead men rise.”
Samuel Taylor Coleridge