Be still!--the voice, if I mistake not greatly,
Proceeds from younder lattice--which you may see
Very plainly through the window--it belongs,
Does it not? unto this palace of the Duke.
The singer is undoubtedly beneath
The roof of his Excellency--and perhaps
Is even that Alessandra of whom he spoke
As the betrothed of Castiglione,
His son and heir.
_Pol_. Be still!--it comes again!
(_very faintly_). "And is thy heart so strong 
As for to leave me thus,
That have loved thee so long,
In wealth and woe among?
And is thy heart so strong
As for to leave me thus?
Say nay! say nay!"
_Bal_. The song is English, and I oft have heard it
In merry England--never so plaintively--
" Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December, And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.Page 1
Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter, In there stepped a stately Raven of the saintly days of yore.Page 2
" Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly, Though its answer little meaning--little relevancy bore; For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door-- Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door, With such name as "Nevermore.Page 3
'" But the Raven still beguiling all my sad soul into smiling, Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird and bust and door; Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore-- What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore Meant in croaking "Nevermore.Page 4
" "Be that our sign of parting, bird or fiend!" I shrieked, upstarting-- "Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Plutonian shore! Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul has spoken! Leave my loneliness unbroken!--quit the bust above my door! Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!" Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore.Page 5
All these and security were within.Page 6
The third was green throughout, and so were the casements.Page 7
It was necessary to hear and see and touch him to be _sure_ that he was not.Page 8
And thus too, it happened, perhaps, that before the last echoes of the last chime had utterly sunk into silence, there were many individuals in the crowd who had found leisure to become aware of the presence of a masked figure which had arrested the attention of no single individual before.Page 9
They rang throughout the seven rooms loudly and clearly, for the prince was a bold and robust man, and the music had become hushed at the waving of his hand.Page 10
And one by one dropped the revellers in the blood-bedewed halls of their revel, and died each in the despairing posture of his fall.Page 11
" "Whither?" "To your vaults.Page 12
You are a man to be missed.Page 13
" "I forget your arms.Page 14
With these materials and with the aid of my trowel, I began vigorously to wall up the entrance of the niche.Page 15
A succession of loud and shrill screams, bursting suddenly from the throat of the chained form, seemed to thrust me violently back.Page 16
I forced the last stone into its position; I plastered it up.