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Edgar Allan Poe (1809—1849) American short-story writer, poet, and critic


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Poem by Poe, published in Poems (1831) and several times revised in later editions. It is prefaced by an altered quotation from the Koran: “And the angel Israfel, whose heart-strings are a lute, and who has the sweetest voice of all God's creatures.” In eight stanzas of great metrical variety, ranging from four- to two-stress lines, the poem contrasts the ideal dwelling place of the angel with the poet's own “world of sweets and sours,” and concludes that if they were to change placesHe might not sing so wildly wellA mortal melody,While a bolder note than this might swellFrom my lyre within the sky.

Subjects: Literature.

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