Tuesday, June 26, 2007


Dim vales— and shadowy floods—
And cloudy—looking woods,
Whose forms we can't discover
For the tears that drip all over!
Huge moons there wax and wane—
Again— again— again—
Every moment of the night—
Forever changing places—
And they put out the star—light
With the breath from their pale faces.
About twelve by the moon—dial,
One more filmy than the rest
(A kind which, upon trial,
They have found to be the best)
Comes down— still down— and down,
With its centre on the crown
Of a mountain's eminence,
While its wide circumference
In easy drapery falls
Over hamlets, over halls,
Wherever they may be—
O'er the strange woods— o'er the sea—
Over spirits on the wing—
Over every drowsy thing—
And buries them up quite
In a labyrinth of light—
And then, how deep!— O, deep!
Is the passion of their sleep.
In the morning they arise,
And their moony covering
Is soaring in the skies,
With the tempests as they toss,
Like— almost anything—
Or a yellow Albatross.
They use that moon no more
For the same end as before—
Videlicet, a tent—
Which I think extravagant:
Its atomies, however,
Into a shower dissever,
Of which those butterflies
Of Earth, who seek the skies,
And so come down again,
(Never—contented things!)
Have brought a specimen
Upon their quivering wings.

by Edgar Allan Poe

(artwork by Edmund Dulac) Share


Anonymous said...

Beautiful! thanks for posting some of Poe's less familiar poetry.

Anonymous said...


I never would have guessed it was by Poe! He certainly had another side to him than the more famous creepy, Gothic persona--and it's turning out to be more and more surprising!

elena maria vidal said...

I know, he had another side to him. He must have written poetry all the time, when he wasn't drinking. Actually, I wonder if he became more morbid as his alcoholism increased.