Annabel Lee – Edgar Allan 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 winged 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 kinsman 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 the sepulchre there by the sea,
In her tomb by the sounding sea.

“Annabel Lee” is about a beautiful, painful memory. The speaker of the poem is remembering his long-lost love, Annabel Lee. The speaker knew Annabel Lee many years ago, when she was a girl, and they both lived “in a kingdom by the sea.” Even though they were only children, these two were really, seriously in love. So in love that even the angels in heaven noticed and were jealous. Maybe that was a bad thing, because our speaker blames the angels for killing his girlfriend. Apparently a wind came down from the clouds, which made Annabel Lee sick and then eventually killed her. When this happened, her relatives came and took her away from the speaker, and shut her up in a tomb.

Our speaker wants us to know that his love for Annabel Lee wasn’t just a teenage crush. A little thing like death isn’t going to separate him from Annabel Lee. Not even angels or devils could do that. He still sees her everywhere, in his dreams and in the stars. In fact he still loves her so much (here’s where it gets really weird) that he goes and lies down with her in her tomb every night. Creepy, but I guess love is love after all.

4 comments

  1. Poe did for Ravens what Stephen King did for Dolls. Both are now forever creepy. Had nothing to do with this beautiful poem, but I’m just sayin…

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