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Nightshades of Eden

Cyn

07. 31. 2023

Modern Gothic Cresting Border
Modern Gothic Cresting Border
Modern Gothic Cresting Border
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When you fall into a labyrinth of tangled phantasms...

Be careful what you seek in the dark. You may find what it is you are looking for. It is hunting, just as hungrily. For you.


In this nightmare world of fragmented reality, violent obsession, and haunting ritual, open the cellar door into a dark hallway lined with the forty five tales and poems in Nightshades of Eden. With 20 full color illustrations beautifully reproduced from original paintings featuring the artist's own blood.


Praise for Nightshades of Eden:

"A darkly carnal delight. A delicious snack for the senses."

- Ginger Lee, London, UK

"A unique and haunting new voice in the world of modern Gothic literature."

- - Julian Black, Denver, CO

"The juxtaposition of visceral imagery and bizarre beauty is both visually arresting and perfectly curated."

- Selena Reyes, Englewood, CO

Nightshades of Eden

Upcoming Dates


Atropa Belladonna

May 31, 2023

Pre-Orders Open

July 29, 2023 8PM

Book Release Party

The Thin Man - Denver, CO

July 31, 2023

Official Book Release

August 4, 2023

Live Reading and Book Signing

Gypsy House Cafe - Denver, CO

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Read an Excerpt

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Nine Reflections in a Shattered Mirror

I.

Last night, I pricked the moon

with a pearl knife.

I watched the glowing white

slither through my fingers,

a raw egg.


II.

The next morning,

we tied her to a post in the backyard

and let her bleat relentlessly, a goat on the altar.

No one told me it was her time for the butcher block.

She was thirteen.

They made me hold the knife.


III.

I wake up to find meridians

cutting your body from North to South.

Your backbone, a sinuous axis.

I read your map from East to West

searching for your shore,

but you have no direction.




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IV.

They saw the colors of the sky

reflected in his gunshot wounds.

That was the night that God

painted the innards of the boy’s heart

into the theater floor.

When they held it in their hands,

the barrel of the rifle became a telescope.

I saw only black.


V.

Sea water fills the auditorium.

Schools of piranha devour the flesh

off the damp velvet seats.

Chiffon hangs from waterlogged bodies

like suspended white ghosts

I touch their translucent skin lovingly.


VI.

“I am no more alive than you are.”

She pierces my wrist with a long scarlet fingernail

and evaporates, leaving a sparrow corpse in my palm.

I watch as I drip into my hand

and fade into the edges of the feathers.


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VII.

I lie naked in a violet room.

Jagged film negatives are strewn

on the grey satin sheets of the bed.

I swim among leering black faces,

lunar white hair framing them like tendrils of smoke.

Your discarded ex-lovers; never developed,

forever present; haunting me.


VIII.

Your hands are made of broken glass.

I feel your touch cut me to ribbons.

You string garlands of my flesh

around the door of your apartment

and boil my bones for broth


IX.

I see them carry it,

a casket filled with hundreds of autumn flowers.

Six pallbearers heave my weightless soul,

their tears breaking on the ground like hailstones.

I wake in a cold sweat next to you.

My body turns to white roses,

smothering you in your sleep.

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Starfall

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We gaze absently out of the windows of the train car

and the dimming landscape slices by,

the sunset an open wound.


As the rust of the sky scabs over into dark,

we are left staring

into the stark white face of a cold and bloodless moon.


I’ve always been quick to realize

that the stars I wish on as I lay in bed

are nothing more than silver pins

holding the velvet of night in place.


Every dawn they rain down in a shining hailstorm;

bullets piercing us with the realization of our own solid existence,

a tangled world of flesh and decay;


Our candles burn til the wicks snuff out

and our wax pools and cools as our spirit rises up with the smoke,

detached, floating into a dreaming world

where the pain is only imagined.



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Check back soon for more excerpts!

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About Cyn

Cynthia lives in Denver, Colorado. In her spare time she loves relaxing at home and spending time with her family, writing, making art, belly dancing, and wandering through old cemeteries (In fact, that's how she met her husband). Cynthia works as a high school English teacher and enjoys cultivating creativity and compassion in the youth in her community. This is her first full length publication.

Nightshades of Eden began ten years ago, as a chapbook for a college poetry class. It continued to grow into a full length collection of poetry, short stories and artwork. "Nightshades of Eden became somewhat of a private chapel of self reflection and expression. It became more of a place to me than a project. This is how I see the world, through my own stained glass lens."

The aesthetic of the book inspired by many elements. Some of the external factors include but not limited to the literature, art, music, and films that have had an influence on her throughout her life. On a more personal level, many of the pieces included in Nightshades of Eden reflect her own experiences, memories, subconscious thoughts, haunting dreams that Cyn overthinks in her waking hours.


Some of Cyn's greatest inspirations include the works of many of the staples of the Victorian and Romantic Era. The Gothic art and literature that came from this movement, particularly the works coming from the 19th Century Fin de Siecle movement, as well as the work of French Imagist poet, Charles Baudelaire. Modern literary influences include Anne Rice, Neil Gaiman, and Sylvia Plath


Some of the films that have inspired the aesthetic of Nightshades of Eden include: The Love Witch, The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears, Belladonna of Sadness, Begotten, Interview With the Vampire, Only Lovers Left Alive, and Francis Ford Coppola's Dracula.


Much of Cyn's work is inspired by the music she listens to during the creative process. She loves both 80's and modern Goth music, but her musical palette is eclectic and spans many genres. A few of her favorite musical artists include The Cure, Depeche Mode, Sisters of Mercy, Type O Negative, Sopor Aeternus, HIM, and La Femme.



Cyn is also the illustrator of Nightshades of Eden. Her artistic influences include the illustrations of Aubrey Beardsley, Alphonse Mucha, Kay Nielsen, Harry Clarke, Edmund Dulac, Warwick Goble, Edward Gorey, Theophile Steinlen, and Rene Lalique. Cyn has always loved working with mixed media. Many of the illustrations featured in Nightshades of Eden include parts that are painted in Cyn's own blood. More than anything, she sees this act as a ritualistic way of connecting herself to her creations. In this sense, she's using a medium that has quite literally flowed through her heart.


It is undeniable that Nightshades of Eden is steeped in darkness. Many of the themes that run throughout are mental illness, depression, suicide, the aftermath of a mass shooting, death, living in a world of decay, and heartbreak. Yet, Nightshades of Eden is not only about darkness. Through slivers of light, hope is visible in some of the brighter notes woven throughout the book. Though there is loss, pain, chaos, violence, and tragedy, there is also love, new life, and a sense of spiritual redemption.

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Official Release Date: July 31st, 2023

Presale Opens May 31st, 2023

Stay tuned for more updates!

Available 07.31.23 at these fine retailers:

nightshadesofeden.art

Cyn's Dark Arts Boutique

The Tattered Cover

Barnes and Noble

Amazon

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Contact Cyn

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Phone

720-980-6527

Email

cynkalam@gmail.com

cyn@nightshadesofeden.art