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Elizabeth by Edgar Allan Poe


"Elizabeth" is a poem written by Edgar Allan Poe. It was written about Poe's cousin, Elizabeth Rebecca Herring, from Baltimore. He also wrote "To F--S S. O--D" to her. Even though this poem was written in 1829, it was not published until after his death.

This poem is about being a poet. It states that in order to be one, you must live an interesting life and study the craft, otherwise the writer is a "fool" and not a true poet.

This poem is written as one stanza with sixteen lines. It has a rhyme scheme of alternativing rhymes (ABAB, for example).



Elizabeth, it surely is most fit
[Logic and common usage so commanding]
In thy own book that first thy name be writ,
Zeno and other sages notwithstanding;
And I have other reasons for so doing
Besides my innate love of contradiction;
Each poet - if a poet - in pursuing
The muses thro' their bowers of Truth or Fiction,
Has studied very little of his part,
Read nothing, written less - in short's a fool
Endued with neither soul, nor sense, nor art,
Being ignorant of one important rule,
Employed in even the theses of the school-
Called - I forget the heathenish Greek name
[Called anything, its meaning is the same]
"Always write first things uppermost in the heart."

Written in 1829 and published in .

Next: Eulalie

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Literary Movement
Romanticism, 19th Century