"Annabel Lee" By Edgar Allen Poe

Poster by Nicholas Sinatra

"Annabel Lee" by Edgar Allen Poe

It was many and many a year ago,

In a kingdom by the sea,

That a maiden there lived whom you may know

By the name of Annabel Lee;

And this maiden she lived with no other thought

Than to love and be loved by me.


I was a child and she was a child,

In this kingdom by the sea,

But we loved with a love that was more than love—

I and my Annabel Lee—

With a love that the wingèd seraphs of Heaven

Coveted her and me.


And this was the reason that, long ago,

In this kingdom by the sea,

A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling

My beautiful Annabel Lee;

So that her highborn kinsmen came

And bore her away from me,

To shut her up in a sepulchre

In this kingdom by the sea.


The angels, not half so happy in Heaven,

Went envying her and me—

Yes!—that was the reason (as all men know,

In this kingdom by the sea)

That the wind came out of the cloud by night,

Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.


But our love it was stronger by far than the love

Of those who were older than we—

Of many far wiser than we—

And neither the angels in Heaven above

Nor the demons down under the sea

Can ever dissever my soul from the soul

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;


For the moon never beams, without bringing me dreams

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side

Of my darling—my darling—my life and my bride,

In her sepulchre there by the sea—

In her tomb by the sounding sea.

Annotations

Literal

This poem is literallly about a tragic young love relationship in which the speaker's true love, Annabel Lee, dies.

Situation

The speaker is in a deep young romantic love relationship with his muse, idol, and childhood friend Annabel Lee. However, "seraphs of Heaven" become jealous of this romantic relationship. They use what power they have to kill Annabel Lee and they succeed in doing so. Yet the speaker despite her death and his mourning for her continues to love her proving that "love conquers all".

The speaker is telling this after it happened since the majority of the narritive poem is in past tense. He speaks in romantically tragic tone as he explains his great lose of Annabel Lee's death.

Structure

The poem has free form structure in terms of form due to the fact it cannot be classified as in a specific structure like a sonnet or limerick. The movement of the poem is a past tense narrative with a calm tone portraying no sadness or glee in tone despite these emotions are part of the story. In terms of syntax, there is a form of puntuaction, whether a comma, semicolon, colon, or period, at the end of almost every line. No enjabments exist for likely not interupt the thought and to make the poem flow. The title "Annabel Lee" suggest that the poem is about said Annabel Lee, but the title gives no clue of said Annabel Lee's story, plight, or fate. The title also does not establish the speaker is. Therefore, the only concrete information drawn from the title is that the poem is about the person's name that is the title.

Language

The diction is not complex but rather simple. No hard vocabulary is to be found. There are a number of allusions, most notably the "seraphs of Heaven" who "coveted her and me". A seraph is winged dvine and celestial being notablely found in multiple places throughout the Bible icluding the books of Isaiah, Ezekiel, and Reveltion. The speaker also mentions "demons under the sea" possibly alluding to hell or other place of dispair from an old myth. Imagry plays a big role through this poem. "[The] wind came out of the cloud by night, Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee." shows the image of the fatal wind.

Musical Devices

The poem has an irregular rhyme scheme. Some lines have a rhyme while subsequent lines do not share the same rhyme. But the poem flows.

Photos

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Edgar Allen Poe: American Author, Poet, and Morphine Addict.
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Poe's wife, Virginia Clemm, was likely the muse for the poem.
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A seraph is essentially an angel from the Bible. They can be found in Bible books such as Ezekiel, Isaiah, and Revelation.

"Annabel Lee" Narrated

POEM ~ Annabel Lee by Edgar Allan Poe

Works Cited

"POEM ~ Annabel Lee by Edgar Allan Poe." YouTube. YouTube, n.d. Web. 07 Mar. 2015. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rf7aBCrfOQE>.


Rooney, Kathleen. "Annabel Lee." Poetry Foundation. Poetry Foundation, n.d. Web. 01 Mar.

2015. <http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/174151>.