Can someone please help? Poem: ALONE, LAST 3 LINESW : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

Can someone help me with the last 3 lines of Alone? It says "And the cloud that took the form" (When the rest of Heaven was blue) "Of a demon in my view"

What does that mean? And why is the 2nd line in parenthesis? If someone could help that would be great! Thanks -Ericka

-- Anonymous, June 12, 2003


For future questions like this try Mabbott's "Edgar Allan Poe: Complete Poems".

Byron: The Prisoner of Chillon X, 44-49 is thematically very very close and Poe was heavily into Byron at that young age. "Lone as a solitary cloud/ A single cloud on a sunny day..../That hath no business to appear..."

The contrast is condensed but very important to the sense of contrast and point of symbolic vision. As in the Bible where the prophet alone in the grandness of nature hears God in the silence as a small voice. Poe continues however. The form of a demon(troll, demons etc are not devils or evil as much as natural spirits, neutral and ambiguous, but present in dark and deadly places. Think djinn(genie). So more than simple melancholy and isolation from the "sunny' world there is a further ominous bit of horror, a sharper more sweeping contrast than in Byron. Poe was not an imitator. He always staked out his own territory when commenting on another's poem. Remeber how this progresses from the first part of the poem staking out his personal vision and isolation before getting to the panning nature vision itself "Then".

-- Anonymous, June 14, 2003

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