Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A Dream

In visions of the dark night
I have dreamed of joy departed-
But a waking dream of life and light
Hath left me broken-hearted.
Ah! what is not a dream by day
To him whose eyes are cast
On things around him with a ray
Turned back upon the past?
That holy dream- that holy dream,
While all the world were chiding,
Hath cheered me as a lovely beam
A lonely spirit guiding.
What though that light, thro' storm and night,
So trembled from afar-
What could there be more purely bright
In Truth's day-star? 

Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe uses many literary devices in his poem “A Dream”, and uses them to increase the quality of his poem and make it be more lively. Poe applies the literary device of imagery by using the terms day and night, since light and dark bring a contrast imagery developing a skeptical mood and a twisting atmosphere. Another literary device that Poe uses in one of his many poems is symbolism, and he applies this by symbolizing joy by being a traveler, never staying in one place and looking for something that sparks his visits to each place. These images are a bit obvious to identify, but they contribute accordingly to form the subject of the poem, which is a dream. In the reader’s mind, the reader has its own opinion for a dream, but his unique choice of words and imagery show how his dreams are and how they have a connection to his life. Poe also used personification when he mentions the word “joy”, saying that joy has departed, able to leave. He also uses a simile when he wrote in a verse: “Hath cheered me as a lovely beam”. By using the word “as” Poe shows the concept of people loving him as an elegant and handsome person. There is also an onomatopoeia “Ah!” used as a sound the narrator gives while narrating this poem to express how he reacted to the news he received. This is showing the sarcastic tone the narrator has during the poem. All of these literary devices contribute to the subject and the theme of his poem, and help compare the dream of the main character to real life.

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