The Raven

The Raven   By Edgar Allan Poe is a poem which delves into the tortured mind and heart of the speaker who is grieving and pining over his lost love, Lenore. The bird is symbolic of eternal   grief. The Raven appears in the poem to help the speaker with the wisdom and reality of life and to drive home the message that the dead cannot come back to life and one must move on. The poet captures the mind of troubled love and depression that is a symbol of self- inflicted torture. Poe elaborates on the fact that the man must have a stringent effort to step out of his own grief and one must grasp the truth which states that the dead can never come back to life.
“The Raven” was first published in the New York Evening Mirror on January 29, 1845, and received popular and critical praise. Sources of “The Raven” have been suggested, such as “Lady Geraldine’s 1843 Courtship” by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Barnaby Rudge by Charles Dickens, and two poems, “To Allegra Florence” and “Isadore” by Thomas Holly Chivers. Over the course of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, “The Raven” has become one of America’s most famous poems, partly as a result, of its easily remembered refrain, “Nevermore.” The speaker, a man who pines for his deceased love, Lenore, has been visited by a talking bird who knows only the word, “Nevermore.” The narrator feels so grieved over the loss of his love that he allows his imagination to transform the bird into a prophet bringing news that the lovers will “Nevermore” be reunited, not even in heaven. In “The Philosophy of Composition,” Poe's own essay about “The Raven,” he describes the poem as one that reveals the human penchant for “self-torture” as evidenced by the speaker’s tendency to weigh himself down with grief.
In the essay Poe also discusses his method of composing “The Raven.” He claims to have given much thought to his selection of the refrain, recognizing in it the “pivot upon which the whole structure might turn.” His selection of the...