The Interpretation of “Abou Ben Adhem” by James Henry Leigh Hunt

The Background
“Abou Ben Adhem” is a poem composed by James Henry Leigh Hunt. The poet was a religious man trained in a Christian hospital. He wrote the poem while still in school. He’s well known as an editor and a prolific writer in English literature. Here you will find the interpretation of famous poem Abou Ben Adhem by James Henry Leigh Hunt.

The Structure
The poem Abou Ben Adhem is written as a religious concept. It consists of 2 stanzas with each having 11 lines. It also contains some archaic terms. The poet used rhymed couplet to communicate the ideas of love, peace and happiness through the poem.

The Meaning
The poem is talking about the religious escapades of a man known as “Adhem”. He sees an angel one night in his room but he remains unruffled. He refuses to be scared since he has a firm belief in God. For him, seeing an angel is a happy thing. He is rather interested in knowing what the angel is writing down. He gets the information that the angel is drafting a list of people who love God. He therefore strives to know whether his name is also included. He gets the information that his name is not in the list. He refuses to be sad or dejected because of that. He goes on to request the angel to write his name in the list of people who love God’s fellowmen. Later one, the angel comes back with a list that has Adhem’s name at very top.

In all, “Abou Ben Adhem” is simply a narrative poem. It tells the story of the man Adhem and his encounter with an angel. The poem sends a message about the power of love, faith and prayer. It shows how some people pray to God. Some pray to love God while others prayer to love their fellow men. In any case, the love of fellow men attracts God’s blessing.