The Raven - Edgar Allan Poe

Scheme: AA-DB-CC-CB-EB-B. All B's rhyme with "more".
More than one word may be missing in the last verse.
Quiz by Karamchand
Last updated: March 29, 2019
First submittedJanuary 7, 2019
Times taken249
Average score42.6%
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Once upon a midnight dreary,
while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious
volume of forgotten lore
While I nodded, nearly napping,
suddenly there came a tapping,
As of someone gently rapping,
rapping at my chamber door.
“’Tis some visitor,” I muttered,
“tapping at my chamber door
Only this and nothing more.”
Ah, distinctly I remember
it was in the bleak December;
And each separate dying ember
wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow;
—vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow
—sorrow for the lost Lenore
For the rare and radiant maiden
whom the angels name Lenore
Nameless here forevermore.
And the silken, sad, uncertain
rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me—filled me with fantastic
terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating
of my heart, I stood repeating
“’Tis some visitor entreating
entrance at my chamber door
Some late visitor entreating
entrance at my chamber door;—
This it is and nothing more.”
Presently my soul grew stronger;
hesitating then no longer,
“Sir,” said I, “or Madam,
truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping,
and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping,
tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you”
—here I opened wide the door;—
Darkness there and nothing more.
Deep into that darkness peering,
long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal
ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken,
and the stillness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken
was the whispered word, “Lenore?”
This I whispered, and an echo
murmured back the word, “Lenore!”—
Merely this and nothing more.
Back into the chamber turning,
all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping
somewhat louder than before.
“Surely,” said I, “surely that is
something at my window lattice;
Let me see, then, what thereat is,
and this mystery explore
Let my heart be still a moment
and this mystery explore;—
’Tis the wind and nothing more!”
Open here I flung the shutter,
when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately Raven
of the saintly days of yore;
Not the least obeisance made he;
not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But, with mien of lord or lady,
perched above my chamber door
Perched upon a bust of Pallas
just above my chamber door
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.
Then this ebony bird beguiling
my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum
of the countenance it wore,
“Though thy crest be shorn and shaven,
thou,” I said, “art sure no craven,
Ghastly grim and ancient Raven
wandering from the Nightly shore
Tell me what thy lordly name is
on the Night’s Plutonian shore!”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
Much I marvelled this ungainly
fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning
—little relevancy bore;
For we cannot help agreeing
that no living human being
Ever yet was blessed with seeing
bird above his chamber door—
Bird or beast upon the sculptured
bust above his chamber door,
With such name as “Nevermore.”
But the Raven, sitting lonely
on the placid bust, spoke only
That one word, as if his soul
in that one word he did outpour.
Nothing farther then he uttered
—not a feather then he fluttered
Till I scarcely more than muttered
“Other friends have flown before
On the morrow he will leave me,
as my Hopes have flown before.”
Then the bird said “Nevermore.”
Startled at the stillness broken
by reply so aptly spoken,
“Doubtless,” said I, “what it utters
is its only stock and store
Caught from some unhappy master
whom unmerciful disaster
Followed fast and followed faster
till his songs one burden bore
Till the dirges of his hope
that melancholy burden bore
Of ‘Never—nevermore’.”
But the Raven still beguiling
all my fancy into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat
in front of bird, and bust and door;
Then, upon the velvet sinking,
I betook myself to linking
Fancy unto fancy, thinking
what this ominous bird of yore
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly,
gaunt, and ominous bird of yore
Meant in croaking “Nevermore.”
This I sat engaged in guessing,
but no syllable expressing
To the fowl whose fiery eyes now
burned into my bosom’s core;
This and more I sat divining,
with my head at ease reclining
On the cushion’s velvet lining
that the lamp-light gloated o’er,
But whose velvet-violet lining
with the lamp-light gloating o’er,
She shall press, ah, nevermore!
Then, methought, the air grew denser,
perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls
tinkled on the tufted floor.
“Wretch,” I cried, “thy God hath lent thee
—by these angels he hath sent thee
Respite—respite and nepenthe
from thy memories of Lenore;
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe
and forget this lost Lenore!”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
“Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil!
—prophet still, if bird or devil!—
Whether Tempter sent, or whether
tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate yet all undaunted,
on this desert land enchanted
On this home by Horror haunted
—tell me truly, I implore
Is there—is there balm in Gilead?
—tell me—tell me, I implore!”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
“Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil!
—prophet still, if bird or devil!
By that Heaven that bends above us
—by that God we both adore
Tell this soul with sorrow laden
if, within the distant Aidenn,
It shall clasp a sainted maiden
whom the angels name Lenore
Clasp a rare and radiant maiden
whom the angels name Lenore.”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
“Be that word our sign of parting,
bird or fiend!” I shrieked, upstarting
“Get thee back into the tempest
and the Night’s Plutonian shore!
Leave no black plume as a token
of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my loneliness unbroken!
—quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart,
and take thy form from off my door!”
Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
And the Raven, never flitting,
still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas
just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming
of a demon’s that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o’er him streaming
throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow
that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted—nevermore!
Level 75
Jul 14, 2020
Love this quiz, got 151 though I had 100% till I got the ungainly stanza. Always loved this poem, the rhythm, internal rhyming an unique rhyming structure. I wish more poems were quizzes on this site.
Level 47
Jul 14, 2020
Glad you liked it. Any suggestions for the next quiz?