SFoxWriting’s Alphabet Challenge ~ “P”
Poetry is my muse and Poe is my favorite poet. Edgar Allan Poe’s life story is not an uplifting one. He suffered great losses that took their toll upon him as a man. Those same losses are also likely why his works are such compelling reads.
l. Born Edgar Poe, “Allan” was not added until Poe was orphaned at age 2 and sent to live with John & Frances Allan.
2. He was the first known writer in the U.S. to earn a living by writing alone. As most writers can relate, this left him financially insecure.
3. Poe was a raging alcoholic. So was his older brother.
4. He married his 13 year old first cousin when he was 26 years old.
5. Poe accused Henry Wadsworth Longfellow of plagiarism.
6. “The Raven” made Poe a household name almost instantly. He was paid $9 for its publication.
7. Poe was best known for his fictional works in the Gothic genre. He also wrote satire, hoaxes, detective stories, and reinvented science fiction.
8. Both Poe’s mother and Poe’s wife died of consumption (tuberculosis).
9. Edgar Allan Poe died at age 40 under mysterious circumstances. His death certificate was lost.
10. Poe’s obituary began “Edgar Allan Poe is dead. He died in Baltimore the day before yesterday. This announcement will startle many, but few will be grieved by it.”
A Dream Within A Dream
Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow-
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.
I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand-
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep- while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?
In spring of youth it was my lot
To haunt of the wide world a spot
The which I could not love the less-
So lovely was the loneliness
Of a wild lake, with black rock bound,
And the tall pines that towered around.
But when the Night had thrown her pall
Upon that spot, as upon all,
And the mystic wind went by
Murmuring in melody-
Then- ah then I would awake
To the terror of the lone lake.
Yet that terror was not fright,
But a tremulous delight-
A feeling not the jewelled mine
Could teach or bribe me to define-
Nor Love- although the Love were thine.
Death was in that poisonous wave,
And in its gulf a fitting grave
For him who thence could solace bring
To his lone imagining-
Whose solitary soul could make
An Eden of that dim lake.