Comparing the Beauty of Poe and Emerson Essay

1269 Words6 Pages
The Beauty of Poe and Emerson They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As stated in Edgar Allan Poe's "The Poetic Principle," a concept of beauty can only be achieved through the use of emotion, an "excitement of the soul," a necessary element to any worthwhile poem (Poe 8). Poe's fascination with the mystery of death and the afterlife are often clearly rooted in his poems and provide a basis for himself and the reader to truly experience his concept of beauty. Although also a believer in portraying beauty through poetry, Ralph Waldo Emerson found beauty to be eminent in nature and all things created by the Oversoul. Beauty for Emerson is not an idea or unknown, it is visible all around him. To Poe beauty…show more content…
Poe manifests all of the criteria for "elevating the soul" in the poem "Annabel Lee". In this poem, the speaker begins by expressing the love between him and Annabel Lee in such a manner that you think it is nothing but an innocent love poem. As the poem progresses, its tone changes from that of love to obsession. 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. By repeating the phrase "of the beautiful Annabel Lee," Poe creates an obsessive persona of the speaker that can only focus on the beauty of his love and how his soul will never be torn from her. His torment and grief is so severe that spending his nights in the tomb of his love can only relieve his aching heart. His nighttime visits become ritualistic in nature, finding comfort in a corpse, an object that is most certainly not beautiful. Poe makes the speaker find comfort in the death of his love, because true beauty

More about Comparing the Beauty of Poe and Emerson Essay

Open Document