Essay about Edgar Allen Poe

Submitted By 15mmanno
Words: 2422
Pages: 10

“Poe was a habitual taker of drugs, until all that is left in the public eye is an unstable creature sitting gloomily in a dim room, the

bottle on the table, the opium in the pipe scribbling mad veres.”,(Markowitz 37). Says one of Mr. Edgar Allan Poe’s many critics. For most of Mr. Poe’s life he was disheveled and riddled with anger and grief from the many losses he suffered throughout his life. These are the very psychological conflicts that drive him into almost complete madness but also become a strong driving force behind what would become some of his best works. At the tender age of two Poe suffered his first loss. On December eighth 1811, Poe’s birth mother died at just 24 (Markowitz 17) from tuberculosis. This loss set the stage for many of Poe’s great works that emanate the grief he carried from this loss for the rest of his life. After his mother died, her sister was the legal guardian of Poe but decided she couldn't handle him (Bittner 15). So instead ,to please his wife, Poe’s uncle, John Allan unwillingly adopted Poe (Markowitz 21). Altho his adoptive father as never fond of Poe and often treated his poorly, (Symons 15) his adoptive mother, Frances Allan, very much loved Poe and even spoiled him (Markowitz 21). With no real mother or friends, Poe had met a boy by the name of Rob and his mother, Poe adored her. Rob's Mother, Jane Stanard was sympathetic and kind towards Poe and after a while became to him the mother he only vaguely remembered. Poe would sit in Jane’s house and watch her perform household chores and loved every moment of it. He later gave her the name “Helen” because he felt that her birth name of Jane was too harsh and didn't match her kind and gentle ways(Bittner 34). But like most loves in Poe’s life she was soon taken from him. On April twenty-eighth 1824 the horrid new of Helen’s death came to Poe. A growth had developed in her brain and ultimately taken her life (Bittner 35). This catastrophic loss in Poe’s life became the base line for both his works To Helen.
The third horrible loss Poe suffered was losing his first real girlfriend to another man. At the age of 16 Poe had recently discovered the girl next door whom he liked very much. Her name was Elmira Royster and she was quite fond of Poe herself. They did not have much time to get to know each other very well because only a short year later at the age of 17, he went off to the university of Virginia. It was not until later that Elmira found out about the numerous letters Poe had written while he was away at school.He would write letters to her with hope, passion and his love for her was evident (Markowitz 35). By this point Elmira was married. The letters had been intercepted by Elmira’s father who didn't approve of their love for one and other (Symons 17). Without a response from Elmira Poe must have felt ashamed and forgotten. This humiliation sparked anger inside young Poe which fired in Poe, deep down inside him, and with this fire came some of his best work. “The “good old times” were far the worst of any, of which sound doctrine I believe each tittle, Yet still I think these worse than them a little. (Poe 21) A line from Edgar Allan Poe’s O, Tempora! O, Mores! . The anger personified in this line of one of his most famous poems illustrated just how upset and angry with most of the world he was. After a year at the university Poe had racked up a tremendous gambling debt of $2000 and become a heavy drinker. He also found out fairly early on that his legal guardian's name was good for credit and continued to spend in their name. Some say that this could be attributed to his homesickness (Bittner 42). By Poe’s 18th birthday his father made it very clear that he would not be sending Poe back to the university (Bittner 47). The problems between Poe and his father only worsened and not long after he came home Poe was gone again. In a terrible fit Poe had fled the house and had his mail forwarded to the Court House Tavern. But