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Analysis and comments on To Helen 1 by Edgar Allan Poe

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Comment 18 of 98, added on January 12th, 2006 at 10:35 AM.

This doesn't make sense! This is a POS poem! Its really gay! Whats the
point of it!?!?!?!

Preston from United States
Comment 17 of 98, added on December 6th, 2005 at 4:53 PM.

this is ones of poe's greatest works of art. this must be charished and
more widley spread. this is a GREAT! poem.

-eva

Erin thanks for the comment, it turly helped a poe lover like me

Eva from United States
Comment 16 of 98, added on December 5th, 2005 at 5:00 AM.

I believe this peom is about America, and especially about the Statue of
Liberty: (lamp within thy hand)-->
America (from the regions which Are Holy Land / a land that has the glory
of Greece and the Grandeur of Rome.)


Ray from United States
Comment 15 of 98, added on December 1st, 2005 at 10:47 AM.

theres no way anyone ewill ever know exactly who "to helen" was actully
about. all we can do is make predictions and eleberate off of them. i
think it's silly trying to guess this becouse this is just as mysterious as
poe's exact death!

kyle from United States
Comment 14 of 98, added on November 17th, 2005 at 8:24 PM.

This poem is cool

air china from United States
Comment 13 of 98, added on November 10th, 2005 at 8:25 AM.

I think it's quite humorous that the subject of the poem is so debated.

Firstly, Poe never married a woman named "Helen". It's a possibility that
he utilized the name of "Helen" (as in, Helen of Troy) as a symbol of
terrible beauty.

It's not probable that he wrote the poem about his wife/cousin Virginia.
They married in 1835, when Virginia was 13. Thus, when the poem was written
1831, she would have been 9 years of age, which is not probable.

A more probable option was that it was written about his friend's mother,
Jane. She died of cancer, but she was his first crush, and was very
influential because she encouraged his liking for literature.

Personally, I like the thoery that thee poem was not written about one
person in particular, but about the idea of beauty.

Adrienne from United States
Comment 12 of 98, added on November 9th, 2005 at 9:16 AM.

This Poem made my life change i now look at all the helens of the world in
a new way

Steven from United States
Comment 11 of 98, added on November 8th, 2005 at 9:56 AM.

I would like you guys to remember that many times Edgar Allen Poe used a
literary method of BIOGRAPHICAL FALLACY, in which he writes and the
audience immeadiately makes pseudonyms (assumtions that what the author
wrotes connects to his life) of his work. He stressed in his "Poetic
Principle" and essay on how to compose poems, that poems should be written
for the poems sake, by outbursts of emotional expression, NOT for the
subject of the poem.

Nick from United States
Comment 10 of 98, added on September 24th, 2005 at 4:34 PM.

I have always interpreted the "Nicean barks of yore" as a reference to The
Odyssey, in particular to Odysseus' long trip home.
I love the sense of movement in the following lines: "That gently, o'er a
perfumed sea/The weary, wayworn wanderer bore/To his own native shore."
Not only does "o'er" suggest "oar" but the alliteration of "weary, wayworn,
wanderer" suggests to me the endless rocking of a boat as the hero/poet
seeks to make his way home. Greece and Rome were the nostalgic destination
points of all Poe's studies. However flawed his project, however removed
from everyday reality, he left us this poem as a marvelous beacon.

John Freeman from United States
Comment 9 of 98, added on January 24th, 2005 at 3:41 PM.

Thank you, Erin. I had really been trying to analyze the poem, but found
myself only more confused. After reading your comments I ow understand the
poem a little more clearly.

Shantell from United States

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Information about To Helen 1

Poet: Edgar Allan Poe
Poem: To Helen 1
Year: 1831
Added: Feb 20 2003
Viewed: 18362 times
Poem of the Day: Jul 25 2005


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