Edgar Allan Poe ~ Dying
"I felt that my senses were leaving me. The sentence, the dread sentence of death, was the last of distinct accentuation which reached my ears"
Edgar Allan Poe ~ The Pit and the Pendulum
The Pit and the Pendulum is a claustrophobic tale of horror and suspense with an overpowering atmosphere of dread that has prompted much discussion about the writer's mental state. We could consider this masterpiece though as a compelling work of a gifted imagination.

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Edgar Allan Poe ~ Dreamland
DREAMLAND
By a route obscure and lonely,
Haunted by ill angels only,
Where an Eidolon, named NIGHT,
On a black throne reigns upright,
I have reached these lands but newly
From an ultimate dim Thule-
From a wild clime that lieth, sublime,
Out of SPACE- out of TIME.
Bottomless vales and boundless floods,
And chasms, and caves, and Titan woods,
With forms that no man can discover
For the tears that drip all over;
Mountains toppling evermore
Into seas without a shore;
Seas that restlessly aspire,
Surging, unto skies of fire;
Lakes that endlessly outspread
Their lone waters- lone and dead,-
Their still waters- still and chilly
With the snows of the lolling lily.
By the lakes that thus outspread
Their lone waters, lone and dead,-
Their sad waters, sad and chilly
With the snows of the lolling lily,-
By the mountains- near the river
Murmuring lowly, murmuring ever,-
By the grey woods,- by the swamp
Where the toad and the newt encamp-
By the dismal tarns and pools
Where dwell the Ghouls,-
By each spot the most unholy-
In each nook most melancholy-
There the traveller meets aghast
Sheeted Memories of the Past-
Shrouded forms that start and sigh
As they pass the wanderer by-
White-robed forms of friends long given,
In agony, to the Earth- and Heaven.
For the heart whose woes are legion
'Tis a peaceful, soothing region-
For the spirit that walks in shadow
'Tis- oh, 'tis an Eldorado!
But the traveller, travelling through it,
May not- dare not openly view it!
Never its mysteries are exposed
To the weak human eye unclosed;
So wills its King, who hath forbid
The uplifting of the fringed lid;
And thus the sad Soul that here passes
Beholds it but through darkened glasses.
By a route obscure and lonely,
Haunted by ill angels only,
Where an Eidolon, named NIGHT,
On a black throne reigns upright,
I have wandered home but newly
From this ultimate dim Thule.
Edgar Allan Poe
Illustration by Alberto Martini
Frantisek Kupka ~ The Way Of Silence
"The Way of Silence" (1900-1903) by Frantisek Kupka (1871-1957)

According to Audrey Wagtberg Hansen in her article "Cold Gods and Fatal Women. "The Many Faces of the Sphinx in the 19th Century", Kupka's Way of Silence was "inspired by the poem Dream-land by Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849), [where] we see a lone traveler on a seemingly endless road under a starry sky, flanked by two rows of stone sphinxes. A Latin text on the pedestal of the front sphinx, 'QUAD AD CAUSUM SUMUS' (= why are we?), again poses a life-and-death question."

Although Kupka's painting certainly doesn't correspond to Poe's Dream-land (1850) in the particulars of its imagery, its depiction of a pathway through eternity certainly captures the atmosphere of the poem's opening stanza:

BY a route obscure and lonely,
Haunted by ill angels only,
Where an Eidolon, named NIGHT,
On a black throne reigns upright,
I have reached these lands but newly
From an ultimate dim Thule -
From a wild weird clime that lieth, sublime,
Out of SPACE - out of TIME

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source Artrenewal
Edgar Allan Poe ~ Immortal Dreams
Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.

Edgar Allan Poe
Gustave Dore ~ A Midnight Dreary
"The Raven" by Edgar Allan Poe; Plate 4
- A Midnight Dreary

Paul Gustave Dore
Gustave Dore ~ The Tempest
Back into the Tempest"
The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe

Paul Gustave Dore
Edgar Allen Poe ~ On Dreaming
"All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream."
Edgar Allen Poe