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The Valley Nis by Edgar Allan Poe

Looking at a photo I took one night: a black sky, the top of a gate, a full moon.

The Valley Nis
Edgar Allan Poe

Far away — far away —
Far away — as far at least
Lies that valley as the day
Down within the golden east —
All things lovely — are not they
Far away — far away ?

It is called the valley Nis.
And a Syriac tale there is
Thereabout which Time hath said
Shall not be interpreted.
Something about Satan’s dart —
Something about angel wings —
Much about a broken heart —
All about unhappy things:
But “the valley Nis” at best
Means “the valley of unrest.”

Once it smil’d a silent dell
Where the people did not dwell,
Having gone unto the wars —
And the sly, mysterious stars,
With a visage full of meaning,
O’er the unguarded flowers were leaning:
Or the sun ray dripp’d all red
Thro’ the tulips overhead,
Then grew paler as it fell
On the quiet Asphodel.

Now the unhappy shall confess
Nothing there is motionless:
Helen, like thy human eye
There th’ uneasy violets lie —
There the reedy grass doth wave
Over the old forgotten grave —
One by one from the tree top
There the eternal dews do drop —
There the vague and dreamy trees

Do roll like seas in northern breeze
Around the stormy Hebrides —
There the gorgeous clouds do fly,
Rustling everlastingly,
Through the terror-stricken sky,
Rolling like a waterfall
O’er th’ horizon’s fiery wall —
There the moon doth shine by night
With a most unsteady light —
There the sun doth reel by day
“Over the hills and far away.”

Comments (3)

  • Anna

    ..he is a wonderful teller. I love his poems, especially The Lake and Annabel Lee 🙂

  • Once there was an artist that drove the only wedge necessary to capture that fleeting cognition of what it is to say, “He was an artist”

  • jeffreyludriks

    Amazing poem, currently writing a thesis on it.


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