In The Sandman S01E11 second part, after Calliope got free there was "Here Comes a Candle" left behind. It's the same novel Erasmus Fry wanted to be reprinted. Is there any significance of this specific novel or its title to the episode?

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    I'd wondered that too - but it's a fairly clichéd book title to use for a horror/mystery writer. The title itself comes from the nursery rhyme, Oranges & Lemons "…here comes a candle to light you to bed, and here comes a chopper to chop off your head"
    – Tetsujin
    Aug 22, 2022 at 11:49
  • @Tetsujin Also referenced in the boys S03E07 episode title
    – Thomas
    Aug 23, 2022 at 6:09

2 Answers 2


As explained by executive producer Allan Heinberg:

When Nora goes to free Calliope, all she finds in the room is a copy of Here Comes a Candle, the novel Erasmus desperately sought to get back into print. What do you think the symbolism is behind that?

That scene comes from the comic book. I think at that moment, the muse is gone and the product of her time there is what’s left behind in the world.

I think readers and viewers can interpret it in a number of different ways: This creature was held prisoner for decades upon decades only for this — this thing that isn’t in print or that people aren’t even reading. Or it can also be taken as a sign that literature lives on and hopefully sends a message to future generations about the dangers of sacrificing others for one’s own advantage.


Here Comes a Candle was the novel that Fry had written on his own, before capturing Calliope. He had no ideas for a follow-up and seemed destined to be a one-hit wonder.

To me, it seemed that Fry's tremendous success with the work of his captured Muse did not actually bring him happiness. Yes, the world believed he was a successful writer, but he knew that only that first book was his creation, and it only existed in used book stores and old collections. He felt like a fraud and wanted the validation that could be had of someone desiring to reprint his masterpiece.

  • "Here Comes a Candle was the novel that Fry had written on his own" - did it explicitly say that? I also got that impression, from the way Fry said "I was particularly proud of that one", but I don't remember anything that stated it clearly Sep 14, 2022 at 15:17

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