Text: Charles W. Kent (notes) Robert A. Stewart (variants) (ed. J. A. Harrison), “Notes to To ——,” The Complete Works of Edgar Allan PoeVol. VII: Poems (1902), pp. 167-168


[page 167, continued:]

TO ——.

Page 43.

TO ——. (I HEED NOT THAT MY EARTHLY LOT). 1845. | ALONE, MS. | TO M——; 1829.

Text, 1845.

The earliest form of this poem (1829) is as follows: —

To M——.


O! I care not that my earthly lot

Hath little of Earth in it —

That years of love have been forgot

In the fever of a minute — [page 168:]


I heed not that the desolate

Are happier sweet, than I —

But that you meddle with my fate

Who am a passer by.


It is not that my founts of bliss

Are gushing — strange! with tears —

Or that the thrill of a single kiss

Hath palsied many years —


’T is not that the flowers of twenty springs

Which have wither’d as they rose

Lie dead on my heart-strings

With the weight of an age of snows.


Now that the grass — O! may it thrive!

On my grave is growing or grown —

But that, while I am dead yet alive

I cannot be, lady, alone.



Harrison’s note is confusing as it would suggest the publication of The Raven and Other Poems, although this poem was not included in that collection. Poe did revise the text from the 1829 Al Aaraaf, Tamerlane and Minor Poems in 1845, presumably with the intention that the poem would be used to fill out the 1845 volume, but it was not selected. Still, that text retains the first line as “O! I care not ...” rather than “I heed not ...” as Harrison prints the poem. It seems likely that Harrison has reprinted the text from the 1850 Griswold text, but modified the punctuation to remove the em-dashes. He does not seem to have used the manuscript that was part of the Griswold papers as that is specifically given as a separate text.


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