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Read the Complete Works of Emily Dickinson... (1 Viewer)

JK_Wannabe

Senior Member
...and I doubt my writing will ever be the same. Don't worry, I'm not gonna take up the habit of putting a bunch of hypens in my writing (though I do seem to add more exclaimation marks now), but now even when I'm doing other things, I'm thinking of a Dickinson poem.

In case you care, this is my favorite:


I measure every Grief I meet

With narrow, probing Eyes, --
I wonder if It weighs like Mine --
Or has an Easier size.

I wonder if they bore it long
Or did it just begin --
I could not tell the Date of Mine --
It feels so old a pain --

I wonder if it hurts to live --
And if They have to try --
And whether -- could They choose between --
It would not be -- to die --

I note that Some -- gone patient long --
At length, renew their smile --
An imitation of a Light
That has so little Oil --

I wonder if when years have piled --
Some Thousands -- on the Harm --
That hurt them early -- such a lapse
Could give them any Balm --

Or would they go on aching still
Through Centuries of Nerve --
Enlightened to a larger Pain --
In contrast with the Love --

The Grieved -- are many -- I am told --
There is the various Cause --
Death -- is but one -- and comes but once --
And only nails the eyes --

There’s a Grief of Want -- and Grief of Cold --
A sort they call “Despair” --
There’s Banishment from native Eyes --
In sight of Native Air --

And though I may not guess the kind --
Correctly -- yet to me
A piercing Comfort it affords
In passing Calvary --

To note the fashions -- of the Cross --
And how they’re mostly worn --
Still fascinated to presume
That Some -- are like my own.
 

ladyaemy

Member
Wwff, this one is powerful, J.K. - not surprised it's your favourite.

Does it have a title (other than the first line)?

(Certainly started off a long line of discussion, didn't it?)

Another fan of E.D.,

Aemy
 

JK_Wannabe

Senior Member
ladyaemy said:
Wwff, this one is powerful, J.K. - not surprised it's your favourite.

Does it have a title (other than the first line)?

(Certainly started off a long line of discussion, didn't it?)

Another fan of E.D.,

Aemy
As far as I know, Emily Dickinson didn't name her poems. They're all known by the first line and that's it.

EDIT: Yeah. I always feel like the killer of every thread, but when I post a new topic and it doesn't get replies... :(
 

ladyaemy

Member
Emily

Re EDIT: don't give up JK; this lady's too good NOT to talk about. I'll trade poems with you, if you like.

Are you using an online source? I used to count on PoemHunter.com, but it's been giving my PC grief lately.


Where are you finding her?

Aemy
 

JK_Wannabe

Senior Member
ladyaemy said:
Re EDIT: don't give up JK; this lady's too good NOT to talk about. I'll trade poems with you, if you like.

Are you using an online source? I used to count on PoemHunter.com, but it's been giving my PC grief lately.


Where are you finding her?

Aemy
I used a book from the library... in print! :book: (It's the version printed in 1960.)

If you need an online source, maybe you could try American Poems instead?
 

Lise

Member
And my favourite is I felt a Funeral, in my Brain (280)

I felt a Funeral, in my Brain,
And Mourners to and fro
Kept treading – treading – till it seemed
That Sense was breaking through –

And when they all were seated,
A Service, like a Drum –
Kept beating – beating – till I thought
My Mind was going numb –

And then I heard them lift a Box
And creak across my Soul
With those same Boots of Lead, again,
Then Space – began to toll,

As all the Heavens were a Bell,
And Being, but an Ear,
And I, and Silence, some strange Race
Wrecked, solitary, here –

And then a Plank in Reason, broke,
And I dropped down, and down –
And hit a World, at every plunge,
And Finished knowing – then –




which I've seen at WritersClub forum

http://www.writersclub.net/literature/emily_dickinson_i_felt_a_funeral_in_my_brain-t73.0.html
 

Amour

Senior Member
Ahh, JK, I'll be happy to post in any thread you start. Just PM me or something if everyone else is to busy name-calling to notice a decent discussion. ;)

My personal favorites (which haven't been listed yet):

6
"If I can stop one heart form breaking,
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain."



In a library

"A precious, mouldering pleasure 't is
To meet an antique book,
In just the dress his century wore;
A privilege, I think,

His venerable hand to take,
And warming in our own,
A passage back, or two, to make
To times when he was young.

His quaint opinions to inspect,
His knowledge to unfold
On what concerns our mutual mind,
The literature of old;

What interested scholars most,
What competitions ran
When Plato was a certainty.
And Sophocles a man;

When Sappho was a living girl,
And Beatrice wore
The gown that Dante deified.
Facts, centuries before,

He traverses familiar,
As one should come to town
And tell you all your dreams were true;
He lived where dreams were sown.

His presence is enchantment,
You beg him not to go;
Old volumes shake their vellum heads
And tantalize, just so."



A BOOK

"He ate and drank the precious words,
His spirit grew robust;
He knew no more that he was poor,
Nor that his frame was dust.
He danced along the dingy days,
And this bequest of wings
Was but a book. What liberty
A loosened spirit brings!"



As far as I know, she didn't explicitly name or not name her pieces. Two of the poems I posted have names, as do the books in which they were written ("Nature", "Life", "Love", "Time and eternity", etc.), but I'm no Dickinson scholar, so I can't say anything with authority.. :p. For online reading (classics out of copyright, I mean..), http://www.gutenberg.org/ is a very decent site (Dickinson = http://www.gutenberg.org/catalog/world/readfile?fk_files=57687&pageno=1) , and a quick google comes up with serveral other sites with her complete colections available for reading or download. Anyway, great stuff, and an exceedingly interesting person. Nice post, JK!
 
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