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Into a sober pleasure, when thy mind
Shall be a mansion for all lovely forms,
Thy memory be as a dwelling-place

For all sweet sounds and harmonies; oh! then,

If solitude, or fear, or pain, or grief, Should be thy portion, with what healing thoughts

Of tender joy wilt thou remember me, And these thy exhortations! Nor, per

chance

If I should be where I no more can hear Thy voice, nor catch from thy wild eyes these gleams

Of past existence-wilt thou then forget That on the banks of this delightful

stream

We stood together; and that I, so long
A worshiper of nature, hither came,
Unwearied in that service: rather say
With warmer love-oh! with far deeper
zeal

Of holier love. Nor wilt thou then forget,

That after many wanderings, many years

Of absence, these steep woods and lofty cliffs,

And this green pastoral landscape, were

to me

More dear, both for themselves and for thy sake!

TO HELEN AND ISRAFEL

L

OWELL'S touch-and-go characterization of Poe-"threefifths of him genius and two-fifths sheer fudge" in the "Fable for Critics" has been accepted by so many readers as an authoritative valuation of his work that it is a matter of justice to both poets to set beside it the comment on the early poetry of the author of "Israfel" printed by Lowell in Graham's Magazine in 1845:

"Mr. Poe's early productions show that he could see through the verse to the spirit beneath, and that he already had a feeling that all the life and grace of the one must depend on and be modulated by

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"To Helen" Lowell wrote: little dimness in the filling up, but the grace and symmetry of the filling up are such as few poets ever attain. . . . It is the tendency of the young poet that impresses us. Here is no 'withering scorn,' no heart blighted' ere it has safely got into its teens; none of the drawing-room sansculottism which Byron had brought into vogue. All is limpid and serene, with a pleasant dash of the Greek Helicon in it. The melody of the whole, too, is remarkable. It is not of that kind which can be demonstrated arithmetically upon the tips of the fingers. It is of that finer sort which the inner ear alone can estimate.

It seems simple, like a Greek column, because of its perfection. . . . Mr. Poe had that indescribable something which men have called genius."

Two qualities are credited to Poe in this estimate which have often been denied him: the presence of an inner experience behind the poem, which informs, irradiates, and shapes it and brings it within the field of high and sincere artistic achievement. Poe has been charged with being a "jingle man"; a calculating artificer in words; a hypnotist with sound; a magical craftsman, but not a genuine artist. He has been denied the gift of that melody which the "inner ear alone can estimate." He has been charged also with practicing the evil magic of those who deceive by imitation, and denied the magic of that ultimate grace which erases all trace of tool and toil. The simple fact is that Poe wrote a small group of poems as lovely and as far beyond the reach of analysis as the most delicate flower; and the

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