Sunday, 29 March 2015

Review of Emily Dickinson Poems

Emily Dickinson PoemsEmily Dickinson Poems by Emily Dickinson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It took me years to ingest these poems... mostly saved them for bathtime reading. Emily Dickinson's life is shrouded in mystery, and her poems are a small window into her period of time, quiet musings about social and political practices and institutions of the time. In her poems, she expresses a great prediction for change; the world going on and unfolding with new ideas. She also seems to rail against the expectations of her own time, and turns to the natural and spiritual world for eternal comfort, connection and stability.

I thought to include, and humbly analyze a well-known poem of Dickinson's, which almost resonates with me:


Hope is the thing with feathers
that perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
and never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could absorb the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

In the poem, the poet is personifying hope by turning it into a grounded bird within us -- something that hasn't yet tested its wings. Still, the bird sings, ever faithful, unrelenting to its caged existence. It knows how to free itself, to look beyond the danger and hostility -- the unknown. Hope asks for nothing and needs no promise. It simply knows and believes, beyond any and all circumstances, in the truth, regardless.

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