Text: Charles W. Kent (notes) Robert A. Stewart (variants) (ed. J. A. Harrison), “Notes to Stanzas,” The Complete Works of Edgar Allan PoeVol. VII: Poems (1902), p. 153


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[page 153:]

STANZAS.

Page 17.

IN YOUTH HAVE I KNOWN ONE WITH WHOM THE EARTH. 1827.

Text, 1827.

EDITORS NOTE.

One whose life was lit from sun and stars knew not the power over him. The light was fraught with sovereignty and passed with a quickening spell, the token of God’s gifts to him who strives and overcomes.

This Reply of Nature to our Intelligence is a monologue of a genius who feels the mysterious power and in its strangeness finds a sign and token of God’s gift of beauty to the artist. Note the occurrence in this poem of such conceptions as God, immortality, intimations of the future, etc.

The form of this poem is the Ottava Rima of which Byron was so fond. The prefixed quotation from Byron is taken from Section XVI. of the Island. This was written in Genoa and published in June, 1823. If this poem was the hint to Poe’s, then Poe’s poem was not written until after 1823 instead of in 1821-2.

 


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Notes:

None.


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[S:0 - JAHCW, 1902] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Editions - The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe (J. A. Harrison) (Notes to Stanzas)