“Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil! – prophet still, if bird or devil! – Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore, Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted – On this home by Horror haunted – tell me truly, I implore – Is there – is there balm in Gilead? – tell me – tell me, I implore! Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.”
When Raven started quoting the Raven my literary heart may have possibly lunged into my throat. And while she was muttering this stanza the last two lines were what she kept repeating.
To break it down if you’re unfamiliar with the poem. On this home by Horror haunted, so there we have the speaker of the poem stating how completely alone they are in their loneliness. We’re reminded of the absolute misery that clings to them.
Now the Balm in Gilead line, the actual literal balm is supposed to have healing properties and was to be the salvation of the people of Israel. It is also a reference to Jeremiah from the Old testament. When he asks this question it is meant as a plea for a semblance of hope.
The Raven in turn simply replies that there is no hope. There is no way to save the speaker from their pain.
But get this the pain the speaker is talking about … it’s the pain of memories.
And I just think that was brilliant! Because Raven wanted to be free of her pain. She wanted to be able to go on with her life and be useful and not have to deal with what has happened to her. But once she is able to rid herself of this pain, she realizes that she has also essentially rid herself of who she is as a person.
Raven who was originally the speaker has become the Raven. She’s the one now stating “There is no hope that your memories will ever stop hurting you. There is no magic way to heal yourself of pain. You can’t be rid of your pain.”
Raven Reyes is the strongest person on this show and I am always blown away when I’m reminded of it.
I finally listened to Recite the Raven and well their instrumentals are good and progress very well but the vocals are just two tones of gurgling. Like it sounds like the dude singing is using mouth wash and talking. It just shows me again that people enjoy simple, talentless things in their every day listening. Thus why I write in a different direction, other wise I would be playing bro core and play 022 chords for three and a half minutes.
Friend: [flawlessly recites the entirety of ‘The Raven’ by Edgar Allen Poe from memory]
Me: “Holy shit. How’d you learn all that?”
Friend: “That’s what I was doing all through high school when I sat in the corner and muttered to myself.”
Me: “Huh. I wondered about that, I thought it was just a 'you’ thing. That was really impressive.”