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The Fall of the House of Usher
DURING the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year, when the clouds hung oppressively low in the heavens, I had been passing alone, on horseback, through a singularly dreary tract of country, and at length found myself, as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher. I know not how it wasbut, with the first glimpse of the building, a sense of insufferable gloom pervaded my spirit. I say insufferable; for the feeling was unrelieved by any of that half-pleasurable, because poetic, sentiment, with which the mind usually receives even the sternest natural images of the desolate or terrible. I looked upon the scene before meupon the mere house, and the simple landscape features of the domainupon the bleak wallsupon the vacant eye-like windowsupon a few rank sedgesand upon a few white trunks of decayed treeswith an utter depression of soul which I can compare to no earthly sensation more properly than to the after-dream of the reveller upon opiumthe bitter lapse into every-day lifethe hideous dropping off of the veil. There was an iciness, a sinking, a sickening of the heartan unredeemed dreariness of thought which no goading of the imagination could torture into aught of the sublime. What was itI paused to thinkwhat was it that so unnerved me in the contemplation of the House of Usher? It was a mystery all insoluble; nor could I grapple with the shadowy fancies that crowded upon me as I pondered. I was forced to fall back upon the unsatisfactory conclusion, that while, beyond doubt, there are combinations of very simple natural objects which have the power of thus affecting us, still the analysis of this power lies among considerations beyond our depth. It was possible, I reflected, that a mere different arrangement of the particulars of the scene, of the details of the picture, would be sufficient to modify, or perhaps to annihilate its capacity for sorrowful impression; and, acting upon this idea, I reined my horse to the precipitous brink of a black and lurid tarn that lay in unruffled lustre by the dwelling, and gazed downbut with a shudder even more thrilling than beforeupon the remodelled and inverted images of the gray sedge, and the ghastly tree-stems, and the vacant and eye-like windows. ......Buy Now (To Read More)
Ebook Number: 932
Author: Poe, Edgar Allan
Release Date: Jun 1, 1997
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