Text: Edgar Allan Poe (ed. T. O. Mabbott), “To Violet Vane,” The Collected Works of Edgar Allan PoeVol. I: Poems (1969), pp. 380-382 (This material is protected by copyright)


[page 380, continued:]


This poem — another piece in the Poe-Osgood literary romance — was recently discovered in the Broadway Journal of May 24, 1845, by Professor James B. Reece of the College of William and Mary, who has kindly communicated it to me. The title is mine; Poe called it merely “To ——.”

In the Broadway Journal, March 29, 1845, receipt is recorded of a poem from “Violet Vane,” which appeared in the issue of April 5. The author was Mrs. Osgood, in whose Poems (1850) it appears at pp. 403-404. [page 381:]

To ———

Perhaps you think it right and just,

Since you are bound by nearer ties,

To greet me with that careless tone,

With those serene and silent eyes.

So let it be! I only know

If I were in your place tonight,

I would not grieve your spirit so,

For all God’s worlds of life and light!

I could not turn, as you have done,

From every memory of the past;

I could not fling, from soul and brow,

The shade that Feeling should have cast.

Oh! I think how it must deepen all

The pangs of wild remorse and pride,

To feel, that you can coldly see

The grief, I vainly strive to hide!

The happy star, who fills her urn

With glory from the God of Day,

Can never miss the smile he lends

The wild-flower withering fast away;

The fair, fond girl, who at your side,

Within your soul’s dear light, doth live,

Could hardly have the heart to chide

The ray that Friendship well might give.

But if you deem it right and just,

Blessed as you are in your glad lot,

To greet me with that heartless tone,

So let it be! I blame you not!


Poe’s reply appeared with “M.” as signature; his unusual discretion in delaying publication for several weeks has caused students to overlook the relation of the poems to each other. Once pointed out, this is unmistakable.


The text given here is that of the Broadway Journal, May 24, 1845 (1:325) the poem has not, so far as I know, been hitherto reprinted. [page 382:]




[S:1 - TOM1P, 1969] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Editions-The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe (T. O. Mabbott) (To Violet Vane)