Text: Anonymous, “Edgar Allan Poe,” Daily Tribune (New York, NY), November 13, 1849, vol. IX, no. 186, whole no. 2677, supplement, p. 1. col. 1


[page 1, column 1:]

For the Semi-Weekly Tribune.

Pen-Etchings from Prairie-Land.



It is not true, ‘the Poet had no friends.’

There’s not a hamlet nor a way-side cot

Throughout the land, where misery has dwelt,

But furnished him a friend — warm, heart-felt friend.

’Tis true they did not swell the air with praise

And loud-toned, fulsome accclamation [[acclamation]],

(Like purse-made friends, who never tell the heart

Their friendship,) for his soul seemed theirs

His lips and pen their speaking oracles —

His harp, their tale of wrong and suffering.

There’s not a spirit crushed by time and grief,

And silent in its heart-wrecked misery,

(A looker-on, midst homage ill-deserved,)

But feels in POE he had a friend, and Poe

A friend in him.

There is a class of men who feel some wrong

In every freak of circumstance and chance —

But these were not his friends. His were the souls

Who, through the live-long day and darkling night,

Conjure no wrong — but writhe with it, and pride,

Till, broken-down in spirit, Death relieves.

It may have been that on the youthful brow,

Shaded by curls and love, and in the eye

Nature had written GENIUS — Child of Song!

If this — and dark obscurity were his.

We have a key to wrongs most exquisite;

And in the wreck of hopes, when cheeks have paled

And curls lie matted o’er the sunken eye,

No wonder we should see Poe’s world-sick friend

Striving, in silence, to let the soul go free.

It may have been that chilling poverty

Had stepped between his heart and her he loved,

Changing his crimson hopes to dark despair,

Freezing the morning of his look and life —

If so — I pledge you he became POES friend

For lending him his ANNABEL, and Song.

Ah! many a friend, around the grave of POE,

Will help to plant the willow o’er his head,

Shading his Harp and him, low sleeping there;

And, with a lynx-eyed jealousy, will watch

And shield from weaker pens his memory.

His was a heart too big for mortal frame;

And in that soul that, rearing up dark things

For men to stare at, turned its [[his]] gaze to Heaven,

When o’er the quiet Earth deep twilight hung,

Shading the face of nature, (that the light

Her sleep might not disturb,) we see a star

That rises in the firmament of thought

So far above its fellows, that we start

To know it had a habitation here,

And fear ’tis sacrilege in hearts like ours

To feel we are POES FRIENDS!

Chicago, October, 1849.





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