Annable Lee: Poe's Reflection On Love

1502 words - 6 pages

There is a difference between loving someone and being in love. Loving your family or loving a friend is an example of one type of love. It is a type of love when you care about the person a lot and have an emotional attachment. Loving your wife, husband, boyfriend or girlfriend are examples of being in love. This type of love is stronger because you have a passionate desire for the person and or deeper affection for them. To either love someone or be in love the emotion is powerful and can make a person feel and do many wild things. In the poem “Annabel Lee” written by Edgar Allen Poe explains his love for his dead wife, Annabel Lee. Edgar Allen Poe uses symbolism, repetition, and fairytale like words in his poem to convey those feelings. Although Annabel has already passed away he holds on to their love and reminisces.
Poe uses a lot of symbolism in his poem to create some hidden messages for the readers. In his poem the narrator repeats the phrase “kingdom by the sea” (2). It is obvious that the kingdom represents his home. The kingdom was a place that he and Annabel resided and shared their strong love for one another. When he says “kingdom by the sea” (2) it is not literal. There is not an actual kingdom or castle of any kind. The narrator no longer calls his home as a “kingdom by the sea” after his wife died. This further reinforces the idea that it is only a kingdom when she is alive. Annabel is what makes his home a kingdom. The “kingdom by the sea” could also be a fantasy of his, not an actual place. Another example of symbols in his poem was when the narrator said “I was a child and she was a child, / In this kingdom by the sea,” (7, 8). According to Bradford A. Booth, Booth believed that Annabel Lee was referenced to Virginia Clemm, which seems to be Edgar Allen Poe’s significant other at the time. Bradford A. Booth stated that Virginia Clemm was a literal child, but Poe was twice her age (Booth). Supporting that fact according to Jeanine Johnson, Johnson states “When Poe married Virginia, she was indeed a child. She was just 13 years old at the time of their wedding, while Poe was a less youthful 27” (Johnson). Assuming that Poe wrote this poem about himself I feel that the hidden message was about Virginia Clemm making their love youthful and pure. Poe stating that he was a child and she was a child could also symbolize the purity and innocence of their love (Johnson). The last symbol in the poem was when the narrator stated “And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side / Of my darling-my darling-life and my bride, / In the sepulchre there by the sea- / In her tomb by the sounding sea” (38-41). The narrator stating that he lies next to his dead wife symbolizes his life just as good as dead without her. He may be alive, but his life is pointless and his emotions are gone along with his wife.
Another technique Poe uses in his poem to convey his feelings is repetition. The narrator repeating himself really shows his strong...

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