illustrated portrait of American author of gothic fiction Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe

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Why did Edgar Allan Poe write the poem "Alone"?

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Edgar Allan Poe is considered one of America's three greatest poets, the inventor of the detective story, the single effect each should produce,  and the horror story whether psychological or physical horror.  His poem "Alone" expresses his intense loneliness, both spiritually and physically. It also perfectly illustrates his idea that poetry was to be beautiful, a true expression which evoked beauty.  Poetry was to be judged by standards, not just according to the haphazard feelings of a critic. The poem is a true example of Poe's writing even though this poem is not as well known as others like "The Raven." As a child, he didn't feel like other kids, didn't relate well with them, and when his mother died when he was three, he was raised by a rather cold man John Allan.  His life was not a happy one which accounts for some of the sadness he portrays, and he dies as a young man.

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