Edgar Allan Poe

Born: January 19, 1809 Boston, Massachusetts
Died: October 7, 1849

   Edgar's parents were both professional actors and both died before he was three years old. He was raised in a foster home by John and Frances Allan. His foster parents sent him to the best boarding schools as a child and then to the University of Virginia. Poe excelled academically while he was in both schools. Unfortunately John was not able to send Poe to go to college anymore because he refused to pay his gambling debts. It was things like this that made Poe go to live with his Aunt and cousin.       

    Edgar first started to write poems when he enlisted in the army shortly after he left the University of Virginia. Poe began to sell short stories to magazines when he moved in with his Aunt and cousin. Then in 1835, he became the editor of the Southern Literary Messenger in Richmond. In 1836 he married his cousin,Virginia Clemm. Over the next ten years he had edited many books. It was during these years that he established himself as a poet, a short-story writer, and an editor.

A Valentine

For her this rhyme is penned, whose luminous eyes,

Brightly expressive as the twins of Leda,
Shall find her own sweet name, that nestling lies
Upon the page, enwrapped from every reader.
Search narrowly the lines!- they hold a treasure
Divine- a talisman- an amulet
That must be worn at heart. Search well the measure-
The words- the syllables! Do not forget
The trivialest point, or you may lose your labor
And yet there is in this no Gordian knot
Which one might not undo without a sabre,
If one could merely comprehend the plot.
Enwritten upon the leaf where now are peering
Eyes scintillating soul, there lie perdus
Three eloquent words oft uttered in the hearing
Of poets, by poets- as the name is a poet's, too,
Its letters, although naturally lying
Like the knight Pinto- Mendez Ferdinando-
Still form a synonym for Truth- Cease trying!
You will not read the riddle, though you do the best you can do.

-Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe