Saturday, February 20, 2010

Poe's Valentines: To M. L. S—— (1847)

To M. L. S—— (1847)

Poe wrote this poem to Marie Louise Shew, who helped Poe's wife Virginia as she was dying. The original manuscript was sent directly to her, dated February 14, 1847. A revised version was printed in Home Journal's March 13, 1847, issue.

To M. L. S——
Edgar Allan Poe

Of all who hail thy presence as the morning-
Of all to whom thine absence is the night-
The blotting utterly from out high heaven
The sacred sun- of all who, weeping, bless thee
Hourly for hope- for life- ah! above all,
For the resurrection of deep-buried faith
In Truth- in Virtue- in Humanity-
Of all who, on Despair's unhallowed bed
Lying down to die, have suddenly arisen
At thy soft-murmured words, "Let there be light!"
At the soft-murmured words that were fulfilled
In the seraphic glancing of thine eyes-
Of all who owe thee most- whose gratitude
Nearest resembles worship- oh, remember
The truest- the most fervently devoted,
And think that these weak lines are written by him-
By him who, as he pens them, thrills to think
His spirit is communing with an angel's.

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