They are very similar in how they suffer and how they deal with their suffering. In order to forget, they block themselves from the outside world, except for the distraught soul in The Fall of the House of Usher who calls for the comfort of an old childhood friend. Edgar Allan Poe himself lived a very dark life. Dave Smith’s essay, “Edgar Allan Poe and the Nightmare Ode”, explores Poe’s life and how it affects his writing. Smith points out that most of Poe’s loved ones died when he was very young, causing him to feel “orphaned” and an outsider. Smith wrote about how Poe wrote these specific characters after himself.
In The Raven, the moment in which the raven arrives signals the protagonist’s downfall. The progression of the protagonist’s state, similar to that in The Fall of the House of Usher, is a very steep hill, one in which he loses self control quite rapidly. Dave Smith has made the connection that the raven signifies mourning. Just as the bird will never leave, mourning for loved ones never ends. The bird knows the protagonist’s soul entirely, making the protagonist more aware of his grief and doomed fate of “an absence of civil intercourse, a silence, and words which echo without effect” (Smith,