A Valentine

by Edgar Allan Poe, Published 1846

Edgar Allan Poe, American Romantic Movement poet, was born in Boston on January 19, 1809. He served five months at Castle Island in 1827, while enlisted in the army.

 

For her this rhyme is penned, whose luminous eyes, 
  Brightly expressive as the twins of Loeda. 
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 saber, 
  If one could merely comprehend the plot. 
Enwritten upon the leaf where now are peering 
  Eyes scintillating soul, there lies 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.

 

— Poe's Poems, Henneberry Edition, c.1901

 

This poem was stealthily dedicated to Poe's friend Frances Sargent Osgood. Increment a letter on each line from 1 to 20 to find the name (highlighted above).

Copyright © 2016 CelebrateBoston.com