Edgar Allan Poe

(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849 / Boston)

A Valentine - Poem by Edgar Allan Poe

For her this rhyme is penned, whose luminous eyes,
Brightly expressive as the twins of Leda,
Shall find her own sweet name, that nestling lies
Upon the page, enwrapped from every reader.
Search narrowly the lines! - they hold a treasure
Divine- a talisman- an amulet
That must be worn at heart. Search well the measure-
The words- the syllables! Do not forget
The trivialest point, or you may lose your labor
And yet there is in this no Gordian knot
Which one might not undo without a sabre,
If one could merely comprehend the plot.
Enwritten upon the leaf where now are peering
Eyes scintillating soul, there lie perdus
Three eloquent words oft uttered in the hearing
Of poets, by poets- as the name is a poet's, too,
Its letters, although naturally lying
Like the knight Pinto- Mendez Ferdinando-
Still form a synonym for Truth- Cease trying!
You will not read the riddle, though you do the best you can do.

Comments about A Valentine by Edgar Allan Poe

  • Anamta Ali Pasha (2/15/2016 11:04:00 AM)

    It's excellent written...Its soooooo love able poem...welldone 😊 😊 😊 (Report) Reply

    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (2/14/2016 6:56:00 PM)

    Susan Williams hit the nail on the head with her comment. Fantastic analysis, Susan. Thank you. (Report) Reply

  • (2/11/2016 4:24:00 AM)

    A great poem on valentine. (Report) Reply

  • Susan Williams (1/12/2016 3:25:00 PM)

    I'm guessing that he really was aware that every poet and literary giant knew within seconds who this valentine was addressed to. Apparently this anacrostic type device was commonly used back then. Although married to Virginia at the time, he and this also married poet Frances were having this SECRET love affair that they SUBTLY conducted with love poems flying back and forth to each other and displayed ever so QUIETLY in publications. I have to think the clever writer in Poe knew the puzzle would be deciphered in minutes- he was just deliberately flashing his scandalous relationship with 'Fanny' Osgood in front of society. And here I thought Poe was always in the grasp of a huge melancholy over women he had loved from afar and who had died - -tragically, of course. As far as the quality of this poem, I think all his other works were masterpieces and this a mere toy, a plaything, that he sported around with. Even so, it sparkles with literary excellence. (Report) Reply

  • Crystal Pierce (3/31/2015 7:01:00 PM)

    He is truly a man that could write his way into a woman's heart! (Report) Reply

  • (10/29/2014 1:23:00 PM)

    To translate the address, read the first letter of the first line in connection with the second letter of the second line, the third letter of the third line and so on to the end. The name will thus appear.
    It will say- Frances Sargent Osgood.
    Nice poem, smart and beautiful.
    (Report) Reply

  • (10/11/2014 9:06:00 PM)

    The riddle of the poem is quite simple, but well done, nonetheless. Certainly more than I could do, and it shows a side of Poe often not looked upon, and that is his romantic side. Not a truly fantastic poem, but enjoyable nonetheless. (Report) Reply

  • Yoam Rafael Sanfiel-reyes (5/24/2014 6:45:00 PM)

    love of a riddle that would be right after christmas eve (Report) Reply

  • Captain Herbert Poetry (4/26/2014 11:52:00 AM)

    Brilliant and fantastic expressions (Report) Reply

  • (11/13/2013 11:06:00 PM)

    wow he was a genius...very clever to hide his beloved's name
    in the poem...pretty sure she was delighted :)
    (Report) Reply

  • (5/28/2013 11:38:00 AM)

    Yes, this poem has the name of who this valentine was written for. The first letter in the first line, the second letter in the second line, the third in the third line and so on and so forth.... that will reveal who the valentine is to. (Report) Reply

  • (1/25/2012 10:40:00 AM)

    i love his poems soooo much! (Report) Reply

  • (11/28/2011 10:59:00 AM)

    I just love Poe's poems! They are breath-taking, intense, sad, cruel, lonely, dark, and horror. He's the perfect example for a gothic poet, and there will be no other. All his poems have different meanings, but if you look pass the words, you can see his past was like, and what he hoped and dreamed his future would be like. Agony and pain made Poe who he is; one of the best poets to ever live! (Report) Reply

  • (3/18/2010 12:01:00 AM)

    @Bhaswat Chakraborty: Nice pun (Report) Reply

  • (4/13/2009 6:39:00 AM)

    All I can say about this poem is that it is very 'Poe'-tic. (Report) Reply

  • (3/8/2009 12:42:00 AM)

    A good poem. very inspiring and really great! ! ! (Report) Reply

  • (3/7/2007 6:02:00 PM)

    I understand Poe I lead a life almost like his terribly sad really but i still get the encoragement and love from him ♥ (Report) Reply

  • (5/30/2005 9:23:00 PM)

    Poe praises the eyes the receiver of the valentine as 'brightly expressive as the twins of Lead (Castor and Pollus) .The receiver has to unearth the meaning hidden in the rhyme.
    (Report) Reply

  • (3/18/2005 2:37:00 AM)

    Brilliant, just brilliant. (Report) Reply

  • (12/13/2004 10:53:00 PM)

    Look closer and You'll see this Valentine was written for
    Frances Sargent Osgood.
    (See comments for An Enigma)
    (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: truth, valentine, heart, lost

Poem Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

Poem Edited: Thursday, February 11, 2016

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