April 12, 2007

The Beauty: Parody of Edgar Allen Poe's "The Raven" Singalong with Brockeim

The Raven/ The Beauty
severe apologies to Edgar Allen Poe
see context below
for the original, see The Raven by Edgar Allen Poe

Once upon a fortnight dreary, up so late, my eyes were bleary,
Over many a thought of curious and hopeful dreams (of which there’s more)—
While I plodded, nearly toppling, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some beauty gently walking, walking towards my emotion’s core.
“‘Tis someone flirting,” I muttered, “Flirting at my emotion’s core—

Only this and nothing more.”


Ah, distinctly I remember it was a month beyond that bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought Harry’s ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow,—vainly I wished she’d borrow
From my letters surcease my sorrow—sorrow because she’s the one I adore—
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels know and well adore—

Nameless here for evermore.


And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each grotto leaf
Thrilled me—filled me with fantastic hopes never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I kept on writing:
“‘Tis someone flirting entreating fancy at my emotion’s core—
Some lost friend teasing entrance at my emotion’s core;

This it is and nothing more.”


Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
“Ma’am,” wrote I, “oh Ma’am! truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is that I was plodding, and so gently you came tapping,
And so faintly you came flirting, flirting at my emotion’s core,
That scarce I was sure I felt you”—here I opened wide the door,

Friendship there and nothing more.


Deep into that friendship peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no poor man ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave only tokens,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, “Harry!”
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, “Harry!”—

Merely this and nothing more.


Back into my emotion turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I felt a flirting something louder than before.
“Surely,” wrote I, “surely that is someone at my heart-string’s door—
Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore—
Let my heart be still a moment, and this mystery explore;—

‘Tis just words and nothing more.”


Open here I flung the closure, when, with many a flirt, there was this treasure,
In here stepped a lovely lady of the saintly days of Our Lord.
The kindest obeisance made she, the minutes stopped and stayed she,
But, with mien of this lovely lady, who sat next to my emotion’s core—
Graced upon me with trust and valor adjacent to my emotion’s core—

Graced, and smiled, and nothing more.


Then this pretty girl beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the kind and tender decorum of the countenance she wore,
“‘Though thy crest be pretty and placid, thou,” I said, “art sure no spineless flaccid,
Friendly grin and soft-speaking Beauty wandering from the Morning shore—
Tell me what thy godly purpose is on the Morning’s Heavenly shore!”

Quoth the Beauty, “Harry.”


Much I marvelled this gorgeous treat 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 girl at his emotion’s core—
Girl, this treat graced this uncultured beast at his emotion’s core,

With such a purpose as “Harry.”


But the Beauty, sitting lonely despite the tremendous trust, spoke only
That one word, as if her soul in that one word she did outpour.
Nothing farther then she uttered; not a syllable then she stuttered—
Till I scarcely more than mumbled; “Other friends have shone before—
On the morrow she will leave me as my Hopes have flown before.”

Then the Beauty said, “Harry.”


Startled at the stillness broken by the reply so often spoken,
“Doubtless,” said I, “what she utters is her only stock—I need more,
Caught from some unhappy boyfriend whom unmerciful verbiage
Followed sage without sagacity till his songs one burden bore—
Till the dirges of her Hope that melancholy burden bore

Of ‘Harry—nevermore.’”


But the Beauty still beguiling all my sad soul into smiling,
Straight I reeled a cushioning in front of her and trust (I still adore);
Then, upon the dream a-sinking, I betook myself to linking
Fancy into fancy, thinking what this beauteous girl I adore—
What this grin, untamed, slim, and beauteous girl I adore

Meant in mentioning “Harry.”


This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the woman whose kindly eyes now burned into my bosom’s core;
This and more I sat inclining, with my head humbly reclining
On the cushion’s feeble lining with the lamp-light gloating o’vr,
But whose feeble thinning lining with the lamp-light gloating o’vr

She shall depress, ah, nevermore!


Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed by the girl’s hidden censer
Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tiled floor.
“Lord,” I cried, “what friend hath thy lent me—by these angels you seem to send me
Respite—respite and nepenthe and forget this girl I adore!
Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget this girl I adore!”

Quoth the Beauty, “Harry.”


“Woman!” said I, “thing of delight!—woman still, if girl or goddess—
Whether Christ sent as friend or girlfriend tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate, yet all undaunted, on this desert land now enchanted—
On this home by Madison taunted,—tell me truly, I implore!”
Is there—is there balm in Chicago?—tell me—tell me, I implore!”

Quoth the Beauty, “Harry.”


“Woman!” said I, “thing of delight!—woman still, if girl or goddess!
By the heaven that bends above us—by the God we both adore—
Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant universe,
I might hold hands with a saintly maiden whom the angels must adore—
Hold a rare and radiant maiden who the angels must adore.”

Quoth the Beauty, “Harry.”


“Be that word our sign of starting, girl, my friend!” I blurted, upstarting—
“You are my friend, I am glad, on my Morning’s shore!
Leave no sad memory or poor token of lilies washed upon the shore!
Leave never, my heart unbroken!—stay right near my emotion’s core!
Take not thy kindness from my heart, nor take thy pretty form from my apartment door!”

Quoth the Beauty, “Harry.”


And the Beauty, never quitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the placid trust of friendship adjacent to my emotion’s core;
And her eyes have all the gleaming of a girl’s whose eyes are teasing,
And the lamp-light o’vr her, like a halo beaming,
And my soul from out from Harry’s shadow that lies floating on the floor

Shall be lifted—nevermore!

About The Beauty
What poet in this time has not read Poe? And what movie goer with a romantic heart has not seen "When Harry Met Sally"? And, even yet, who has not found a friend's smiling ever beaming more with beauty than first noticed in days before?

Poe's poem is a masterpiece in American, if not world English literature. Sober, sad and grieving, with mystery and angst. Only those who have never been in love do not understand these kinds of feelings as Poe describes them.

I hope you like my parody.

--Brockeim

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