The Works of Edgar Allan Poe — Volume 2

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 127

"He is up
There like a Roman statue! He will stand
Till Death hath made him marble!"

"Come," he said at length, turning towards a table of richly enamelled
and massive silver, upon which were a few goblets fantastically
stained, together with two large Etruscan vases, fashioned in the same
extraordinary model as that in the foreground of the portrait, and
filled with what I supposed to be Johannisberger. "Come," he said,
abruptly, "let us drink! It is early--but let us drink. It is _indeed_
early," he continued, musingly, as a cherub with a heavy golden hammer
made the apartment ring with the first hour after sunrise: "It is
_indeed_ early--but what matters it? let us drink! Let us pour out an
offering to yon solemn sun which these gaudy lamps and censers are
so eager to subdue!" And, having made me pledge him in a bumper, he
swallowed in rapid succession several goblets of the wine.

"To dream," he continued, resuming the tone of his desultory
conversation, as he held up to the rich light of a censer one of the
magnificent vases--"to dream has been the business of my life. I have
therefore framed for myself, as you see, a bower of dreams. In the heart
of Venice could I have erected a better? You behold around you, it is
true, a medley of architectural embellishments. The chastity of Ionia
is offended by antediluvian devices, and the sphynxes of Egypt are
outstretched upon carpets of gold. Yet the effect is incongruous to
the timid alone. Proprieties of place, and especially of time, are
the bugbears which terrify mankind from the contemplation of the
magnificent. Once I was myself a decorist; but that sublimation of folly
has palled upon my soul. All this is now the fitter for my purpose. Like
these arabesque censers, my spirit is writhing in fire, and the delirium
of this scene is fashioning me for the wilder visions of that land
of real dreams whither I am now rapidly departing." He here paused
abruptly, bent his head to his bosom, and seemed to listen to a sound
which I could not hear. At length, erecting his frame, he looked
upwards, and ejaculated the lines of the Bishop of Chichester:

_"Stay for me there! I will not fail_
_To meet thee in that hollow vale."_

In the next instant, confessing the power of the

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There open fanes and gaping graves 30 Yawn level with the luminous waves; But not the riches there that lie In each idol's diamond eye,-- Not the gaily-jewelled dead, Tempt the waters from their bed; 35 For no ripples curl, alas, Along that wilderness of.
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The rosemary nods upon the grave; The lily lolls upon the wave; 10 Wrapping the fog about its breast, The ruin moulders into rest; Looking like Lethe, see! the lake A conscious slumber seems to take, And would not, for the world, awake.
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45 To the weak human eye unclosed; So wills its King, who hath forbid The uplifting of the fringéd lid; And thus the sad Soul that here passes Beholds it but through darkened glasses.
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They blind, deafen, and strangle you, and take away all power of action or reflection.
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Even with the utterly lost, to whom life and death are equally jests, there are matters of which no jest can be made.
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When you first made this assertion I thought you were jesting; but afterwards I called to mind the peculiar spots on the back of the insect, and admitted to myself that your remark had some little foundation in fact.
Page 127
certain similarity in general outline.
Page 130
" "Well, a kid, then--pretty much the same thing.
Page 138
What seems to me the chief ingenuity in this whole business, is the fact (for repeated experiment has convinced me it _is_ a fact) that the circular opening in question is visible from no other attainable point of view than that afforded by the narrow ledge on the face of the rock.