For Annie

By Edgar Allan Poe 1809–1849 Edgar Allan Poe
Thank Heaven! the crisis,
      The danger, is past,
And the lingering illness
      Is over at last—
And the fever called "Living"
      Is conquered at last.

Sadly, I know
      I am shorn of my strength,
And no muscle I move
      As I lie at full length—
But no matter!—I feel
      I am better at length.

And I rest so composedly,
      Now, in my bed,
That any beholder
      Might fancy me dead—
Might start at beholding me,
      Thinking me dead.

The moaning and groaning,
      The sighing and sobbing,
Are quieted now,
      With that horrible throbbing
At heart:—ah, that horrible,
      Horrible throbbing!

The sickness—the nausea—
      The pitiless pain—
Have ceased, with the fever
      That maddened my brain—
With the fever called "Living"
      That burned in my brain.

And oh! of all tortures
      That torture the worst
Has abated—the terrible
      Torture of thirst
For the naphthaline river
      Of Passion accurst:—
I have drank of a water
      That quenches all thirst:—

Of a water that flows,
      With a lullaby sound,
From a spring but a very few
      Feet under ground—
From a cavern not very far
      Down under ground.

And ah! let it never
      Be foolishly said
That my room it is gloomy
      And narrow my bed;
For man never slept
      In a different bed—
And, to sleep, you must slumber
      In just such a bed.

My tantalized spirit
      Here blandly reposes,
Forgetting, or never
      Regretting, its roses—
Its old agitations
      Of myrtles and roses:

For now, while so quietly
      Lying, it fancies
A holier odor
      About it, of pansies—
A rosemary odor,
      Commingled with pansies—
With rue and the beautiful
      Puritan pansies.

And so it lies happily,
      Bathing in many
A dream of the truth
      And the beauty of Annie—
Drowned in a bath
      Of the tresses of Annie.

She tenderly kissed me,
      She fondly caressed,
And then I fell gently
      To sleep on her breast—
Deeply to sleep
      From the heaven of her breast.

When the light was extinguished,
      She covered me warm,
And she prayed to the angels
      To keep me from harm—
To the queen of the angels
      To shield me from harm.

And I lie so composedly,
      Now, in my bed,
(Knowing her love)
      That you fancy me dead—
And I rest so contentedly,
      Now in my bed
(With her love at my breast).
      That you fancy me dead—
That you shudder to look at me,
      Thinking me dead:—

But my heart it is brighter
      Than all of the many
Stars in the sky,
      For it sparkles with Annie—
It glows with the light
      Of the love of my Annie—
With the thought of the light
      Of the eyes of my Annie.

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Poet Edgar Allan Poe 1809–1849

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

SCHOOL / PERIOD Victorian

Subjects Health & Illness, Living, Love, Time & Brevity, Relationships, Men & Women, Death, Romantic Love, Desire, Infatuation & Crushes

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

 Edgar  Allan Poe

Biography

Poe’s stature as a major figure in world literature is primarily based on his ingenious and profound short stories, poems, and critical theories, which established a highly influential rationale for the short form in both poetry and fiction. Regarded in literary histories and handbooks as the architect of the modern short story, Poe was also the principal forerunner of the “art for art’s sake” movement in nineteenth-century . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Health & Illness, Living, Love, Time & Brevity, Relationships, Men & Women, Death, Romantic Love, Desire, Infatuation & Crushes

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

SCHOOL / PERIOD Victorian

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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