What inspired the melancholy in imagery and themes in Poe's works?

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What inspired the melancholy in the imagery and themes in Poe's works?

-- Anonymous, March 18, 2001


to answer your question it would have to be his imagination. only a few have this dear and precious quality.

-- Anonymous, May 03, 2001

Imagery from troubled life and troubled dreams, but melancholy was in vogue(maybe still is) as a romantic mood. Few of these poems are artificial though and have more passion and sincerity than say Longfellow or his other contemporaries. Melancholy? Maybe it was his Irish heritage combined with loneliness and tragedy. Though sensitive and personalized, these poems are not openly revealing, choosing to conceal as much as reveal, to extract beauty rather than resolve intractable personal problems. With the Raven he made some poems a commodity to sell over and over again(like his tales),sometimes attributing or dedicating them to different people(thus the Annabel Lee controversy). A common impression here is that most of this melancholy comes from the death of Virginia Poe, but many predate this to less traumatic losses when he could cooly state that the ideal poem would have as its subject matter the untimely death of a young woman. As with Dante the emotion was a springboard to art.

-- Anonymous, May 03, 2001

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