Edgar Allan Poe

Here you will find the Poem Israfel of poet Edgar Allan Poe


In Heaven a spirit doth dwell
 "Whose heart-strings are a lute";
 None sing so wildly well
 As the angel Israfel,
 And the giddy stars (so legends tell),
 Ceasing their hymns, attend the spell
 Of his voice, all mute.

 Tottering above
 In her highest noon,
 The enamored moon
 Blushes with love,
 While, to listen, the red levin
 (With the rapid Pleiads, even,
 Which were seven,)
 Pauses in Heaven.

 And they say (the starry choir
 And the other listening things)
 That Israfeli's fire
 Is owing to that lyre
 By which he sits and sings-
 The trembling living wire
 Of those unusual strings.

 But the skies that angel trod,
 Where deep thoughts are a duty-
 Where Love's a grown-up God-
 Where the Houri glances are
 Imbued with all the beauty
 Which we worship in a star.

 Therefore thou art not wrong,
 Israfeli, who despisest
 An unimpassioned song;
 To thee the laurels belong,
 Best bard, because the wisest!
 Merrily live, and long!

 The ecstasies above
 With thy burning measures suit-
 Thy grief, thy joy, thy hate, thy love,
 With the fervor of thy lute-
 Well may the stars be mute!

 Yes, Heaven is thine; but this
 Is a world of sweets and sours;
 Our flowers are merely- flowers,
 And the shadow of thy perfect bliss
 Is the sunshine of ours.

 If I could dwell
 Where Israfel
 Hath dwelt, and he where I,
 He might not sing so wildly well
 A mortal melody,
 While a bolder note than this might swell
 From my lyre within the sky.