Poe's poem The Raven contains the following words in the fifteenth stanza:
[...] tell me truly, I implore—
Is there—is there balm in Gilead?—tell me—tell me, I implore!"
What does 'Gilead' mean here? I've looked it up on the internet, but apparently the only places known as Gilead are real-life places in the Middle East - perhaps with some religious significance, but not literally Paradise. Why, then, does the narrator ask about "balm in Gilead"? What is the significance of this question put to the raven?