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    To Marie Louise (Shew)

    by Edgar Allan Poe
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    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 thy soft-murmured words that were fulfilled
    In thy 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.


    * * * * *


    Not long ago, the writer of these lines,
    In the mad pride of intellectuality,
    Maintained "the power of words"--denied that ever
    A thought arose within the human brain
    Beyond the utterance of the human tongue:
    And now, as if in mockery of that boast,
    Two words--two foreign soft dissyllables--
    Italian tones, made only to be murmured
    By angels dreaming in the moonlit "dew
    That hangs like chains of pearl on Hermon hill,"--
    Have stirred from out the abysses of his heart,
    Unthought-like thoughts that are the souls of thought,
    Richer, far wilder, far diviner visions
    Than even the seraph harper, Israfel,
    (Who has "the sweetest voice of all God's creatures,")
    Could hope to utter. And I! my spells are broken.
    The pen falls powerless from my shivering hand.
    With thy dear name as text, though hidden by thee,
    I cannot write--I cannot speak or think--
    Alas, I cannot feel; for 'tis not feeling,
    This standing motionless upon the golden
    Threshold of the wide-open gate of dreams,
    Gazing, entranced, adown the gorgeous vista,
    And thrilling as I see, upon the right,
    Upon the left, and all the way along,
    Amid empurpled vapors, far away
    To where the prospect terminates--_thee only_!
    If you're writing a To Marie Louise (Shew) essay and need some advice, post your Edgar Allan Poe essay question on our Facebook page where fellow bookworms are always glad to help!

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