Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) was an American author and editor known for his story of suspense and macabre. He was a leading figure of the Romantic Movement and a pioneer in the genre of a crime story (Sova).
This poem was published by Poe in 1827, the same year he left school. Edgar himself is the voice in this poem. The poem has a gloomy atmosphere that shifts to one of optimism halfway through the poem, then returns to a dark mood in the last stanza. In the first three stanzas, Poe recounts his discouraging and frustrating childhood but in the second half, Poe is seeing his freedom and realizing that he can follow his dream. However the last stanza returns to the dark mood as Poe realizes his happiness will be short lived.
The poem is organized into six stanzas and which are divided into two sections. In the first set of three, Poe talks about his childhood where he remembers his foster father_x0092_s unsupportive attitude towards his writing during his unhappy childhood. In the fourth and fifth stanzas Poe talks about his newfound freedom after dropping out of school to follow his dream.
The last stanza returns back to the mood of the first three as Poe realizes that his happiness will be short lived because he will have to endure an endless struggle. Poe in his poem employs mainly the use of metaphor and personification as the stylistic devices. Three of the styles are analyzed below._x000b_Personification
This is where nature or human characteristics are attributed to something that is not human or simply the representation of an abstract quality in human form. Poe uses a number of metaphors to portray his feelings clearly. However the use of personification takes the poem to a whole new level. Poe in his poem personifies pride and power. In the first stanza, third line. _x0093_The highest hope of Pride and Power_x0094_ .He addresses Pride and Power as if they were human and friendly figures. He also talks of pride and power as having left, _x0093_they have varnished._x0094_ Poe gives them human characteristics where they can move. In the third stanza first line, _x0093_Pride, what have I now with thee_x0094_ Poe also addresses pride as a person with human characteristics.
Poe also personifies hath as in the first stanza fourth line, _x0093_I feel hath flown._x0094_ He talks of hath as a fellow human being and also gives it the ability to flee away. Poe uses personification for example in the case of pride and power in his poem to mainly give the reader a visual sense of the increasing pride and power at the beginning of his poem.
The images in this poem are portrayed mainly by metaphors and similes. Metaphor being a direct comparison between two things that are not similar, Poe uses a number of metaphors to portray his feelings clearly .In his poem, Poe uses metaphors like, _x0093_wing was dark alloy_x0094_ Here wings are likened to a dark alloy.
This is because at the beginning of the poem Poe was riding on Pride and Power_x0092_s wing as they flew higher and higher. But when Pride and Power can_x0092_t fly any more, Poe is left to ride a metal wing falling to the ground and a very high rate (Myrodias).
Poe in his poem also employs the use of assonance as a stylistic style. This involves the use of same vowel sounds within the same line or sentence in a poem. This are used in different stanzas in his poem for example the fifth stanza, in the third line _x0093_even then I felt that brightest_x0094_. The vowel sound _x0091_e_x0092_ is repeated in the words across this sentence. This sentence indicates that he use of assonance. Assonance in Poe_x0092_s poem is mainly employed or used in order to add rhythm and music.
In conclusion, The Happiest Day, Happiest Hour poem by Allan Edgar Poe is a good poem that is build by use of some important stylistic devices mainly personification and metaphor as analyzed. Poe in his poem says that the emotional fall one takes after their happiest moment outweighs the overall happiness. The happiest moment Poe felt was the moment when his pride and power were at their highest (Sova).
From Poe_x0092_s poem, we are warned that as Pride and Power fly higher and higher the imminent fall grows larger. And like anything else that falls from a great height, a crater is left, making the fall longer than the flight and harder to recover from. The poem plays a key role to remind us that when you are at your highest point, you are also at your most vulnerable. More analysis of Poe_x0092_s poem can also be done using the work of some literary editors like, Arthur Hobson Quinn, in his book, A Critical Biography and Dawn B. Sova_x0092_s book Critical Companion to Edgar Allan Poe; A Literary Reference to His Poetical Work among others.
Dawn, Sova. Critical Comparison to Edgar Allan Poe; A Literary Reference to His Life and Work
Myrodias, Antonis. Visioning Five Nikes. New York: Google Art Project, 2013.
Poe, Edgar Allan. The Poetic Principle. BiblioBytes, 1995.