Edgar Allan Poe’s dream poem is as close to music as words can ever come. First published on October 9, 1849 – two days after Poe’s death – this haunting, lyric poem is thought to have been written in memory of Poe’s young wife, Virginia. The narrator, who fell in love with Annabel Lee when they were young, has a love for her so strong that even angels are jealous. He retains his love for her even after her death.
NOTE: As this story is only a few hundred words in length, it is given in full in the excerpt section below.
301 words, with a reading time of ~ 0.017 hours (~ 1 page), and first published in 1849. This DRM-Free edition published by epubBooks, 2011.
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At only 301 words, I’ve include the full story of Annabel Lee below.
It was many and many a year ago, In a kingdom by the sea, That a maiden 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 wingéd 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 by night Chilling my ANNABEL LEE; So that her high-born 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, 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 see 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 side of the sea.