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28 October, 2012
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Gustave Doré
Illustrations for Poe's The Raven

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Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow;
Sorrow for the lost Lenore.
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore—
'T is some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door—
—Here I opened wide the door;—Darkness there, and nothing more.
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.
'Surely,' said I, 'surely that is something at my window lattice;
Open here I flung the shutter.
—A stately Raven of the saintly days of yore.
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.
Wandering from the Nightly shore.
On the morrow he will leave me, as my hopes have flown before.'
Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking Fancy unto fancy.
But whose velvet violet lining with the lamplight gloating o'er She shall press, ah, nevermore!
Respite—respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore!'
On this home by Horror haunted.
Is there—is there balm in Gilead?
'Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn,
'Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!' I shrieked, upstarting.
'Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Plutonian shore!'
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor Shall be lifted—nevermore!
The secret of the Sphinx.

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