The Raven and The Haunted Palace by Edgar Allan Poe

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“Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,” (“The Raven” 1). “The Raven” arguably one of the most famous poems by Edgar Allan Poe, is a narrative about a depressed man longing for his lost love. Confronted by a talking raven, the man slowly loses his sanity. “The Haunted Palace” a ballad by Poe is a brilliant and skillfully crafted metaphor that compares a palace to a human skull and mind. A palace of opulence slowly turns into a dilapidated ruin. This deterioration is symbolic of insanity and death. In true Poe style, both “The Raven” and “The Haunted Palace” are of the gothic/dark romanticism genre. These poems highlight sadness, death, and loss. As to be expected, an analysis of the poems reveals differences and parallels. An example of this is Poe’s use of poetic devices within each poem. Although different in structure, setting, and symbolism these two poems show striking similarities in tone and theme.
The structure and setting of these poems is quite different. “The Raven” is a narrative poem consisting of 18 stanzas. Each stanza consists of six lines. Conversely, “The Haunted Palace” is a ballad consisting of only 6 stanzas and a total of 48 lines. The setting of “The Raven” takes place in a chamber. We are not sure what type of room the chamber is; only that it is dark as the fire is dying and throwing shadows on the floor (“The Raven” 1-8). The setting of “The Haunted Palace” takes place in a palace in a valley. At first, the palace is beautiful and peaceful, but it turns to a dark sad ruin. Recall the palace is a metaphor (allegory) for the mind, so the setting also includes the healthy mind growing insane (Meyer, p. 893). While the structure and setting are dissimilar, the same...

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...s, and demons. Upon a deeper inspection, I feel the two poems are reflective of Poe himself. Poe was a troubled soul that dealt with these themes during the course of his life. This could be an indication as to why the dark themes is so prevalent in these poems. Regardless of the reason for the similarities, much like the darkness that surrounded Poe’s life, the connected correlations of these poems will persist evermore.

Works Cited

Meyer, M. (2013). Bedford introduction to literature: Reading, thinking, writing. Boston: Bedford Bks St Martin’s.
Poe, E. A. “The Haunted Palace.” Bedford introduction to literature: Reading, thinking, writing. 10th ed. Boston: Bedford Bks St Martin’s. 2013. 891-893. Print.
Poe, E. A. “The Raven.” Bedford introduction to literature: Reading, thinking, writing. 10th ed. Boston: Bedford Bks St Martin’s. 2013. 789-791. Print.

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