In the valley of unrest, can i get some opinions towards the theme of the story? : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

In the valley of unrest, can i get some opinions towards the theme of the story?

-- Anonymous, March 31, 2002


A poem not a story. As a companion to "The City in the Sea" this imaginary landscape poem is similarly about silence and motionlessness of a deserted landscape disturbed by some melancholy. The earlier version" The Valley of Nis" is easier to explain and the references to the Hebrides as the location are many. Poe had occasion as a boy to visit there and those memories provide the vagueness and awe of this otherwise dreamlike setting replete with local legends and graves. Shelley's poem on weeping flowers, "Sensitive Plant" is evident. "Nis" is uncertain in origin(child's faulty memory of "innis'. The violet eyes, or flowers or stars are like the eyes of Helen, actively watching over. it is sort of like an impressionist painting full of motion yet static and quiet.(Van Gogh's night and stars?). Above all as in "The Haunted Palace" these poems describe a past "Once" that was happy and a haunted, unsettling now of trapped tension devoid of life yet still somehow alive.

-- Anonymous, April 01, 2002

About the early version of this poem, "The Valley Nis", we may perhaps get some hints with various old Hebrew and/or Syriac lexicons. We can find, indeed, several amazingly consistent and relevant meanings for the single common root "nis", all about "to be upset", as well as "to fly away". How and where Poe could find this bipolar significance I cannot precise, but it is just the linguistic puzzle he relished. And if we don't choose to go eastward, and prefer to stay by Scottish or Lake Lands, we may try some pun with "Nithsdale" and the like, as we find in many Northern Collections of Romantic Ballads or Minstrelsy. With Poe, each word is like a very book, open or closed, just as we like it. Yours sincerely, Raven's Shade (Belgium).

-- Anonymous, April 06, 2002

Maybe, I should add that the word "Hebrides" forbears the Hebrew root "Heb'r", designing anything "of the other side", "distant", "far beyond (westward!)", "on extreme border or edge", and even "veiled", "unclear", &c... strongly suggesting Poe's probable intention to confer some Biblical tone to this wonderful "Vignette". One thing is sure: Poe was deeply interested with prophetic language and Hebraîc culture far earlier than when connected with Prof. Ch. Anthon, as often believed. And we must totally reconsider the usual dictum about his "superficial" erudition. Poe's mind was compelled to explore more and more and more. And we must not at all accept his "Pinakidia" as mean pretension to pedantic knowledge, but just as a journalist-editorial hoax pointed against quack M. Matson's novel " Paul Ulric" he had just savagely reviewed (q.v.) in the "Southern Literary Messenger". Yours, Raven's Shade (Belgium).

-- Anonymous, April 08, 2002

Aoww! What a vocabulary-blunder! Instead of "forbears", please, read "evokes", naturally! My English is still pitifully frail and uncertain, I reckon, without any dictionnary here in the "cyber- café". Sorry. Yours, Raven's Shade (Belgium).

-- Anonymous, April 08, 2002

Extreme border’s prophecy or unveiled language??

Blah, blah, blah

What is the link between the gaze’s edge and the luscious day-dreams:

“By seeing farther than the eye hath shown, They look into the beauty of thy mind.”

No less, no more.

Blabber from vale-land

originally established in Helvetica MS

-- Anonymous, May 13, 2002

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