As we have seen, all Poe Girls suffer tragic fates. What defines and separates them from each other are their reactions, whether it be passive, thwarting, or, in the case of “Eleonora,” forgiving.
“Eleonora” is the last and only positive version among these stories, featuring a happy marriage unclouded by dark arts or moribund philosophy. However, it’s still a Poe story, so tragedy inevitably ensues. The narrator and wife, Eleonora, are cousins, who live alone (save for Eleonora’s mother) in the idyllic Valley of Many-Colored Grass. They grow up together inseparable companions who fall in love when Eleonora turns fifteen. When their marriage is consummated, there is an outpouring of blooming vegetation throughout the valley: “A change fell upon all things. Strange, brilliant flowers, star-shaped, burst out upon the trees where no flowers had been known before. The tints of the green carpet deepened; and when, one by one, the white daisies shrank away, there sprang up in place of them, ten by ten of the ruby-red asphodel. And life arose in our paths;...”
The newlyweds’ bliss is cut short when Eleonora falls fatally ill. Like Ligeia and Morella, she worries over her death, not its fatality, but whether it will sever their love. She voices these worries during her final throes, vowing she will follow and guard the narrator wherever he goes:
And, then and there, I threw myself hurriedly at the feet of Eleonora, and offered up a vow, to herself and to Heaven, that I would never bind myself in marriage to any daughter of Earth—that I would in no manner prove recreant to her dear memory, or to the memory of the devout affection with which she had blessed me. And I called the Mighty Ruler of the Universe to witness the pious solemnity of my vow. And the curse which I invoked of Him and of her, a saint in Helusion, should I prove traitorous to that promise....
With the narrator’s arduous vow, Eleonora dies peacefully.