help please!!! : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

what did he mean by this poem and what was the style? why did he write? if you know let me know im doing my midterm on this and need a few answers to help me thanks the valley of unrest

Once it smiled a silent dell Where the people did not dwell; They had gone unto the wars, Trusting to the mild-eyed stars, Nightly, from their azure towers, To keep watch above the flowers, In the midst of which all day The red sunlight lazily lay. Now each visitor shall confess The sad valley's restlessness. Nothing there is motionless- Nothing save the airs that brood Over the magic solitude. Ah, by no wind are stirred those trees That palpitate like the chill seas Around the misty Hebrides! Ah, by no wind those clouds are driven That rustle through the unquiet Heaven Uneasily, from morn till even, Over the violets there that lie In myriad types of the human eye- Over the lilies there that wave And weep above a nameless grave! They wave:- from out their fragrant tops Eternal dews come down in drops. They weep:- from off their delicate stems Perennial tears descend in gems.

-- Anonymous, January 08, 2001



Originally titled "The Valley of Nis", this poem was first published in "Poems" in 1831, a collection of Poe's early poetry. It was reprinted in the Southern Literary Messenger in its February 1836 edition with the same title. The first time it appeared with the title, "The Valley of Unrest" was in the April 1845 edition of the American Review and had had numerous revisions made by Poe.

According to Arthur H. Quinn in his 1941 biography of Poe, "Edgar Allan Poe - A Critical Biography" (pg 184), he states that Poe used the inverted form of the word Sin to identify the valley where the punishment for some unknown sin is eternal restlessness. Those visitors to the valley are condemned to eternal motion which is in contrast to the only element mentioned to be at a state of rest,... the very airs that brood over the magic solitude.

Now each visitor shall confess

The sad valley's restlessness.

Nothing there is motionless -

Nothing save the airs that brood

Over the magic solitude

Quinn also says that this poem is a variant on the theme used in the poem, "The City in the Sea" and in the introductory lines of the original poem were the lines...

"But the 'Valley Nis' at best

Means 'the valley of unrest,'"

Finally, Quinn points out that Poe's use of the air, normally the most active element, as the only exception to the eternal motion was a great improvement over the original.

Good luck,

-- Anonymous, January 08, 2001

I agree good answer

-- Anonymous, December 30, 2002

Moderation questions? read the FAQ