De Waven


Once upon a midnight dweawy, whiwe I pondewed, weak and weawy,
Ovew many a qwaint and cuwious vowume of fowgotten wowe-
Whiwe I nodded, neawwy napping, suddenwy thewe came a tapping,
As of some one gentwy wapping, wapping at my chambew doow.
"'T is some visitow," I muttewed, "tapping at my chambew doow-
Onwy this and nothing mowe."

Ah, distinctwy I wemembew it was in the bweak Decembew;
And each sepawate dying embew wwought its ghost upon the fwoow.
Eagewwy I wished the mowwow;-vainwy I had sought to bowwow
Fwom my books suwcease of sowwow-sowwow fow the wost Wenowe-
Fow the wawe and wadiant maiden whom the angews named Wenowe-
Namewess hewe fow evewmowe.

And the siwken, sad, uncewtain wustwing of each puwpwe cuwtain
Dwiwwed me-fiwwed me wif fantastic tewwows nevew fewt befowe;
So that now, to stiww the beating of my heawt, I stood wepeating
"'T is some visitow entweating entwance at my chambew doow-
Some wate visitow entweating entwance at my chambew doow;-
Dis it is and nothing mowe."

Pwesentwy my souw gwew stwongew; hesitating then no wongew,
"Siw," said I, "ow Madam, twuwy youw fowgiveness I impwowe;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gentwy you came wapping,
And so faintwy you came tapping, tapping at my chambew doow,
Dat I scawce was suwe I heawd you"-hewe I opened wide the doow;-
Dawkness thewe and nothing mowe.

Deep into the dawkness peewing, wong I stood thewe wondewing, feawing,
Doubting, dweaming dweams no mowtaw evew dawed to dweam befowe;
But the siwence was unbwoken, and the stiwwness gave no token,
And the onwy wowd thewe spoken was the whispewed wowd, "Wenowe!"
Dis I whispewed, and an echo muwmuwed back the wowd "Wenowe!"
Mewewy this and nothing mowe.

Back into the chambew tuwning, aww my souw within me buwning,
Soon again I heawd a tapping somewhat woudew than befowe.
"Suwewy," said I, "suwewy that is something at my window wattice;
Wet me see, then, what theweat is, and this mystewy expwowe-
Wet my heawt be stiww a moment and this mystewy expwowe;-
'T is the wind and nothing mowe!"

Open hewe I fwung the shuttew, when wif many a fwiwt and fwuttew
In thewe stepped a statewy Waven of the saintwy days of yowe.
Not the weast obeisance made he; not a minute stopped ow stayed he;
But, wif mien of wowd ow wady, pewched above my chambew doow-
Pewched upon a bust of Pawwas just above my chambew doow-
Pewched, and sat, and nothing mowe.

Den this ebony biwd beguiwing my sad fancy into smiwing,
By the gwave and stewn decowum of the countenance it wowe,
"Dough thy cwest be shown and shaven, thou," I said, "awt suwe no cwaven,
Ghastwy gwim and ancient Waven wandewing fwom the Nightwy showe-
Teww me what thy wowdwy name is on the Night's Pwutonian showe!"
Qwof the Waven, "Nevewmowe."

Much I mawvewwed this ungainwy foww to heaw discouwse so pwainwy,
Dough its answew wittwe meaning-wittwe wewevancy bowe;
Fow we cannot hewp agweeing that no wiving human being
Evew yet was bwessed wif seeing biwd above his chambew doow-
Biwd ow beast upon the scuwptuwed bust above his chambew doow,
Wif such name as "Nevewmowe."

But the Waven, sitting wonewy on the pwacid bust, spoke onwy
Dat wowd, as if his souw in that one wowd he did outpouw.
Nothing fawthew then he uttewed-not a feathew then he fwuttewed-
Tiww I scawcewy mowe than muttewed "Othew fwiends have fwown befowe-
On the mowwow he wiww weave me, as my hopes have fwown befowe."
Den the biwd said "Nevewmowe."

Stawtwed at the stiwwness bwoken by wepwy so aptwy spoken,
"Doubtwess," said I, "what it uttews is its onwy stock and stowe
Caught fwom some unhappy mastew whom unmewcifuw Disastew
Fowwowed fast and fowwowed fastew tiww his songs one buwden bowe-
Tiww the diwges of his Hope that mewanchowy buwden bowe
Of 'Nevew-nevewmowe.'"

But the Waven stiww beguiwing aww my fancy into smiwing,
Stwaight I wheewed a cushioned seat in fwont of biwd, and bust and doow;
Den, upon the vewvet sinking, I betook mysewf to winking
Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous biwd of yowe-
What this gwim, ungainwy, ghastwy, gaunt, and ominous biwd of yowe
Meant in cwoaking "Nevewmowe."

Dis I sat engaged in guessing, but no sywwabwe expwessing
To the foww whose fiewy eyes now buwned into my bosom's cowe;
Dis and mowe I sat divining, wif my head at ease wecwining
On the cushion's vewvet wining that the wamp-wight gwoated o'ew,
But whose vewvet viowet wining wif the wamp-wight gwoating o'ew,
She shaww pwess, ah, nevewmowe!

Den, methought, the aiw gwew densew, pewfumed fwom an unseen censew
Swung by Sewaphim whose foot-fawws tinkwed on the tufted fwoow.
"Wwetch," I cwied, "thy God haf went thee-by these angews he haf sent thee
Wespite-wespite and nepenthe fwom thy memowies of Wenowe;
Qwaff, oh qwaff this kind nepenthe and fowget this wost Wenowe!"
Qwof the Waven "Nevewmowe."

"Pwophet!" said I, "thing of eviw!-pwophet stiww, if biwd ow deviw!
By that Heaven that bends above us-by that God we bof adowe-
Teww this souw wif sowwow waden if, within the distant Aidenn,
It shaww cwasp a sainted maiden whom the angews name Wenowe-
Cwasp a wawe and wadiant maiden whom the angews name Wenowe."
Qwof the Waven "Nevewmowe."

"Be that wowd ouw sign of pawting, biwd ow fiend!" I shwieked, upstawting-
"Get thee back into the tempest and the Night's Pwutonian showe!
Weave no bwack pwume as a token of that wie thy souw haf spoken!
Weave my wonewiness unbwoken!-qwit the bust above my doow!
Take thy beak fwom out my heawt, and take thy fowm fwom off my doow!"
Qwof the Waven "Nevewmowe."

And the Waven, nevew fwitting, stiww is sitting, stiww is sitting
On the pawwid bust of Pawwas just above my chambew doow;
And his eyes have aww the seeming of a demon's that is dweaming,
And the wamp-wight o'ew him stweaming thwows his shadow on the fwoow;
And my souw fwom out that shadow that wies fwoating on the fwoow
Shaww be wifted-nevewmowe!

~Edgaw A. Poe