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The Happiest Day, The Happiest Hour by Edgar Allan Poe


"The Happiest Day, The Happiest Hour", written when Poe was about nineteen, discusses his loss of youth. A similar version of the poem titled "Original" was attributed to his brother William Henry Leonard Poe and was published September 15, 1827. It is believed that Edgar wrote the poem, but William edited it with Edgar's approval.

This poem is written in six stanzas with four lines in each and the rhyme scheme of ABAB.


The Happiest Day, The Happiest

The happiest day- the happiest hour
  My sear'd and blighted heart hath known,
The highest hope of pride and power,
  I feel hath flown.

Of power! said I? yes! such I ween;
  But they have vanish'd long, alas!
The visions of my youth have been-
  But let them pass.

And, pride, what have I now with thee?
  Another brow may even inherit
The venom thou hast pour'd on me
  Be still, my spirit!

The happiest day- the happiest hour
  Mine eyes shall see- have ever seen,
The brightest glance of pride and power,
  I feel- have been:

But were that hope of pride and power
  Now offer'd with the pain
Even then I felt- that brightest hour
  I would not live again:

For on its wing was dark alloy,
  And, as it flutter'd- fell
An essence- powerful to destroy
  A soul that knew it well.

Published in  in Tamerlane and Other Poems.

Next: The Haunted Palace

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Literary Movement
Romanticism, 19th Century

Life, Happiness, Growing Old