Edgar Allan Poe; Fame Inspired By A Tragic Life

2609 words - 10 pages

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intake and then found it nearly impossible to stop drinking or hallucinating” (Beidler, Philip. "Soldier Poe." The Midwest Quarterly 53.4 (2012):).“His personal life was chaotic and he died when only 40... his fate was heavy, his life all but insupportable. A rain of blows descended on him from the time of his
birth” (Poe: A Life Cut Short. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. 2008). This quote, taken from a paper written about Poe, talks about how he had issues. It talks about how his alcoholism destroys his life, and about how his mental diseases help bring his stories to life.
As a child Poe would roam around graveyards. He had a teacher that spoke to him about hell and total damnation. Wanting to escape this life, he took to the eerie scenery of England. Which fueled “a lifelong obsession with the supernatural” ("Graveyard that gave birth … Biography in Context. 2012). Although an obsession with the world around him was not that unusual, it was the specific places he chose. The unusual way he wandered around aimlessly gained him suspicion of a mental disorder.
The work of Edgar Allan Poe is still studied in classrooms across the nation. Both his poems and short stories are favored by instructors and students alike. Two of his more known poems that have appeared in lesson plans throughout the ages are “The Raven” and “Annabelle Lee.” Both of which are inspired by the most tragic losses Poe had experienced in his short life: the loss of a beloved woman.
“The Raven” is a poem dedicated to Poe's first love. She was the mother of a classmate Poe had befriended when he was fourteen years old. She is described as “very kind to Poe and he grew terribly attached to her. The next year she suddenly died, leaving him severely depressed” (“Edgar Allan Poe.” LitFinder. 2007). This unrequited love for an older woman gave life to the image of “Lenore,” The famous woman trapped in the lines of “The Raven.” The poem was published in the late January of 1845. This poem was popular from the very beginning and still is claimed by some to be one of the best poems written in the Romance era.
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The poem is about a lonely man, wallowing in his depression over the loss of his lovely Lenore. One night, as he was drifting off in the library, he heard a rapping at the door. Frightened, delusional, he calls for who is there and no answer follows. Incense, carried by the wings of ghostly angels, filled
the room with the sweet scent of Lenore. The rap tap tapping at the door reoccurs, and the man is upset.
He goes to answer the door, to find a lone raven. This raven swooped in and tormented the man with his repetitive “Nevermore.” To quote the poem itself, “Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore—What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore, Meant in croaking "Nevermore"”("The Raven." EXPLORING Poetry. Detroit: Gale, 2003). This line was found to show the distaste for the bird.

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