by Edgar Allan Poe
US poet, critic and short story writer. Poe is best known for his macabre horror stories including The Fall of the House of Usher, The Gold Bug and The Black Cat (1842). His key poems include Lenore (1831), The Raven (1842), Ulalume (1847). He also wrote some critical essays including The Philosophy of Composition (1846), Time and Space (1844) and The Poetic Principle (1850), and a novel The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym (1838). Poe had a great influence on a number of writers including Arthur Conan Doyle and Jules Verne.
by Edgar Allan Poe
Oh! that my young life were a lasting dream!
My spirit not awak'ning, till the beam
Of an Eternity should bring the morrow:
Yes! tho' that long dream were of hopeless sorrow,
'Twere better than the dull reality
Of waking life to him whose heart shall be,
And hath been ever, on the chilly earth,
A chaos of deep passion from his birth !
But should it be - that dream eternally
Continuing - as dreams have been to me
In my young boyhood - should it thus be given,
'Twere folly still to hope for higher Heaven!
For I have revell'd, when the sun was bright
In the summer sky; in dreamy fields of light,
And left unheedingly my very heart
In climes of mine imagining - apart
From mine own home, with beings that have been
Of mine own thought - what more could I have seen?
'Twas once & only once & the wild hour
From my rememberance shall not pass - some power
Or spell had bound me - 'twas the chilly wind
Came o'er me in the night & left behind
Its image on my spirit, or the moon
Shone on my slumbers in her lofty noon
Too coldly - or the stars - howe'er it was
That dream was as that night wind - let it pass.
I have been happy - tho' but in a dream
I have been happy - & I love the theme -
Dreams! in their vivid colouring of life -
As in that fleeting, shadowy, misty strife
Of semblance with reality which brings
To the delirious eye more lovely things
Of Paradise & Love - & all our own!
Than young Hope in his sunniest hour hath known.