Annabel Lee (A Narrative Criticism) By George P. Lumayag
Edgar Allan Poe was a poet best known for his short stories and poems. Most of his master pieces deal with the theme pertaining to the tragic separation of lovers. Annabel Lee is the subject of this short critique. This selection shares the readers - the author’s insights into the deteriorating mind of the lover left behind to suffer alone. Annabel Lee describes the love and devotion of a man for his dead wife.
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.
This poem has a tragic ending of the character but it also shows the undying love of the husband and he narrates the great love of his wife. This poem shows another facet of everlasting love between the husband and the wife. Edgar Allan Poe, as the author of this poem shared his stand by pen to express to his readers the value of true love and devotion. The lines of this poem emphasize the great love and devotion of the husband to his wife that even after death the love is still more than love.
Other writers had analyzed the poem, Annabel Lee and believed that the story of the poem would be the personal experiences of the author, Edgar Allan Poe. And I also believe that Annabel Lee is the character of Poe’s wife.
Using the name Annabel Lee instead of Virginia Clemm was a professional choice and application of Poe’s Poetical License as a prolific writer and poet in literature. Based from history Virgina Clemm was Poe’s wife who married him at the age of 13 and who died in 1847 before she turned 25.
The author expresses his objective first by setting the mood as represented in the phrase, “in a kingdom by the sea.” The sea is metaphorical. It is commonly used to represent the divider or the symbol of unreachable... Another metaphorical word is the wind that can really affect the clouds and the sea. And that symbolizes the ups and downs of man’s life which also attributes to the death of Annabel Lee. As stated in the lines, the death of Annabel Lee is argued by the author, believing that it is done by the jealous angels in heaven. Moreover, the author of the poem emphasizes the second part of his objective which is more clearly portrayed when the narrator describes Annabel Lee as beautiful in four times and mentions their love as eternal. Supporting lines mention about the envious angels, reasons for the death of Annabel Lee, and the situations – to lie down in the sepulcher all nights in the sounding sea. These are the times when the character starts losing his mind near the time of his death. This critique would not agree when others would say few lines are over-exaggerated. The situations in the poem are true. Therefore, I believe that those situations were the personal experiences of Edgar Allan Poe.
And I really believe that Edgar Allan Poe did lie down in the sepulcher all nights. To lie down in the tomb at night is not that difficult. That's possible....