Edgar Allan Poe: A Critical Biography

By Arthur Hobson Quinn | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XVII
Eureka

As the new year of 1848 opened, Poe grew better in health, revived his plan for a magazine, and began new projects. A letter to Eveleth tells of his hopes:

New York, Jan. 4, 1848.

My Dear Sir--Your last, dated July 26, ends with--"Write will you not?" I have been living ever since in a constant state of intention to write, and finally concluded not to write at all until I could say something definite about The Stylus and other matters. You perceive that I now send you a Prospectus--but before I speak farther on this topic, let me succinctly reply to various points in your letter. l--"Hawthorne" is out--How do you like it? 2--"The Rationale of Verse" was found to come down too heavily (as I forewarned you it did) upon some of poor Colton's personal friends in Frogpondium--the "pundits," you know; so I gave him "a song" for it & took it back.1 The song was "Ulalume--a Ballad," published in the December number of the Am. Review. I enclose it as copied by the Home Journal ( Willis paper), with the editors' remarks--please let me know how you like "Ulalume." As for the "Rat. of Verse," I sold it to "Graham" at a round advance on Colton's price, and in Graham's hands it is still--but not to remain even there; for I mean to get it back, revise or rewrite it (since "Evangeline" has been published) and deliver it as a lecture when I go South & West on my Magazine expedition. 3--I have been "so still" on account of preparation for the magazine campaign--also have been working at my book-- nevertheless I have written some trifles not yet published--some which have been. 4--My health is better--best. I have never been so well. 5--I do not well see how I could have otherwise replied to English. You must know him, (English) before you can well

____________________
1
This does not agree with Mrs. Gove's account of the purchase of a poem which seems to have been "Ulalume," in 1846.

-535-

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