For Annie


Edgar Allan Poe

THANK Heaven! the crisis—
        The danger is past,
And the lingering illness
        Is over at last—
And the fever called “Living”
        Is conquered at last.

Sadly, I know
        I am shorn of my strength,
And no muscle I move
        As I lie at full length—
But no matter!—I feel
        I am better at length.

And I rest so composedly,
        Now, in my bed,
That any beholder
        Might fancy me dead—
Might start at beholding me,
        Thinking me dead.

The moaning and groaning,
        The sighing and sobbing,
Are quieted now,
        With that horrible throbbing
At heart:—ah, that horrible,
        Horrible throbbing!

The sickness—the nausea—
        The pitiless pain—
Have ceased, with the fever
        That maddened my brain—
With the fever called “Living”
        That burned in my brain.

And oh! of all tortures
        That torture the worst
Has abated—the terrible
        Torture of thirst
For the naphthaline river
        Of Passion accurst:—
I have drank of a water
        That quenches all thirst:—

Of a water that flows,
        With a lullaby sound,
From a spring but a very few
        Feet under ground—
From a cavern not very far
        Down under ground.

And ah! let it never
        Be foolishly said
That my room it is gloomy
        And narrow my bed;
For man never slept
        In a different bed—
And, to sleep, you must slumber
        In just such a bed.

My tantalized spirit
        Here blandly reposes,
Forgetting, or never
        Regretting its roses—
Its old agitations
        Of myrtles and roses:

For now, while so quietly
        Lying, it fancies
A holier odor
        About it, of pansies—
A rosemary odor,
        Commingled with pansies—
With rue and the beautiful
        Puritan pansies.

And so it lies happily,
        Bathing in many
A dream of the truth
        And the beauty of Annie—
Drowned in a bath
        Of the tresses of Annie.

She tenderly kissed me,
        She fondly caressed,
And then I fell gently
        To sleep on her breast—
Deeply to sleep
        From the heaven of her breast.

When the light was extinguished,
        She covered me warm,
And she prayed to the angels
        To keep me from harm—
To the queen of the angels
        To shield me from harm.

And I lie so composedly,
        Now in my bed,
(Knowing her love)
        That you fancy me dead—
And I rest so contentedly,
        Now in my bed,
(With her love at my breast)
        That you fancy me dead—
That you shudder to look at me,
        Thinking me dead:—

But my heart it is brighter
        Than all of the many
Stars in the sky,
        For it sparkles with Annie—
It glows with the light
        Of the love of my Annie—
With the thought of the light
        Of the eyes of my Annie.

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