How does one envision death? Most think of cold, dark, broken, emptiness. Edgar Allan Poe sees it with an iron bell. “Hear the tolling of the bells – Iron bells!” (4.1-4.2) As he writes about reaching that afterlife, reaching the eternity that is death you can see the literary terms he uses to extend out to the reader how cold, dark, broke, and empty demise is. Poe uses more than a couple terms in this poem but in stanza 4, the final destination, he uses terms like personification, imagery and mood. To begin with, when using personification in this piece “From the rust within their throats is a groan” (4.10 - 4.11) Poe wants to demonstrate here that the afterlife is an old, and busted place. With using the word “rust” it brings thoughts of cracked swing sets that need to be thrown out or a bike that was left in the rain too long adding to the effect of aged death. With this in mind imagery comes into action as he uses specific words to play out the darkness. “They are neither man nor woman – They are neither brute nor human – They are Ghouls” (4.19 – 4.22) It comes to light here that these “bell ringers” aren’t man nor human, but things that feast on bodies of the dead. They help to reinforce the death imagery that has been lurking under the surface. And finally there’s mood. Without it there wouldn’t be the shadowy, chilly setting. “In the silence of the night, How we shiver with affright” (4.5 – 4.6) Poe really tries here to show the grim state of people lying awake at night, listening to the bells and shivering with fear. Ultimately death seems to be a very cold, dark, broken, empty thing and Edgar Allan Poe displays this without fail. It seems reaching the afterlife is a much scarier place than imagined so to ask this question again, how does one envision death?