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10 thoughts on “Selected Poems and Letters of Emily Dickinson

  1. says:

    One of my favourite Who can let the reader dreams within the words.

  2. says:

    Upon one s first experience reading the poems of Emily Dickinson, it is easy to label the reclusive author s works as being purely introspective accounts of her daily life However, not many recognize the strong themes of social resistance that are hidden just below the surface in much of Dickinson s poetry She often includes symbols that signify female oppression as wells as allusions to her frustration at living in a male dominated society By studying Dickinson s work in depth, it is possible for the reader to gain an understanding of Dickinson as one of America s first woman advocates of free thinking as well as a promoter of feminist rights By gaining knowledge about the culture in which Dickinson lived, it is possible for the reader to gain a new perspective on her poetry Indeed, feminist references can be found in almost every one of her poems if examined closely Through creative use of language, Dickinson expresses her frustration with her situation, and asserts her beliefs that an afterlife is uncertain and that one should work to find happiness here on earth She also reveals her stance that women should not be afraid to care about nurturing their own individual souls outside of the church s official doctrine In To Flee from Memory Dickinson makes a powerful statement about the suffering that women endure, and her desire for change She begins with an allusion to the stifling society she lives in, To flee from memory Had we the Wings Many would fly Inured to slower things Birds with dismay Dickinson seems to be lamenting her role as a woman She compares herself to a bird without Wings that is forever land bound and is desperately seeking the freedom of the open sky She comments that women are inured by men to accept what society sees as an acceptable role for them In the last stanza, she seems to stress the importance that in order to evoke change men must escap e From the mind of man Dickinson perhaps deliberately separates the two meanings of man here The first pertains to men as individuals who are cowering in the face of a new way of thinking and the second makes man synonymous with society Only when men have forgotten traditional religious and historical teachings can society move forward At the present, however, all the misery that women willingly endure hinges on their belief in the Calvinist teaching that in heaven they will finally gain their Wings Dickinson explores this opinion further in Some Keep the Sabbath Going to Church Just as in To Flee from Memory , references are made to Calvinist belief systems and the church s overwhelming focus on the afterlife This poem, however, does not focus so much on deriding the church s teachings, but rather explores how women can find divinity in nature that is just as wondrous as that which they would encounter in heaven By looking around at God s creation, Dickinson devises new concepts of worship that do not include the following of Calvinist doctrine Her full thoughts on organized religion are disclosed in the second stanza of the poem where she writes, Some keep the Sabbath in Surplice I just wear my Wings Like Memory , the mention of Wings could be a symbol for personal freedom When Dickinson is alone in nature, she is able to create a personal connection with God and does not feel pressured to conform to a chauvinist society In this environment, she is able to proudly wear her wings with no fear of retribution from others Dickinson entrances her reader with cheerful descriptions of birds and trees which keep the poem from becoming too dreary, yet she does not let anyone forget her true intent She closes Sabbath with the line Instead of getting to Heaven, at last I m going, all along Her skepticism of the existence of an afterlife is perfectly clear here, but a notable accomplishment on Dickinson s part is how she manages to convey her disapproval of the Calvinist doctrine without distancing herself from God By questioning her religion, yet refusing to demonize the church, Dickinson opens up her work to a wider, mostly female audience who might be afraid of God s wrath if they choose to liberate themselves She shows it is possible to enjoy a solitary divine experience, and that God invites everyone, even women , to enjoy his creation and bask in their individuality on a daily basis The fact that Dickinson s works were published post mortem did not in any way diminish the profound impact that Emily Dickinson has had on future generations of American poets, both women and men Although our modern American culture often encourages us to admire those who are extroverted and are not afraid to voice their opinions, it is important for us not to dismiss Emily Dickinson due to her introversion Conversely, she is the true embodiment of the American revolutionary spirit Dickinson did not sacrifice her ideals for anyone, and rejected accepted thought patterns in favor of a new radical approach ultimately bettered the way women were viewed in society.

  3. says:

    Bees and calvary.I wanted to like this than I did The poems are short and sharp The language plain understandable on the surface at least, by anyone who speaks English and can think You don t even need access to a dictionary And on top of that, she isn t squarely on the university list of to read poets or wasn t when I was at university In these ways, I have always thought she had a place somewhat akin to, say, Dylan Thomas, or maybe Frost.And yet, mostly these poems left me feeling a bit cold I rarely felt moved More frequently, I was struck by something as being clever or well put But that s not what I look for in a poem And for whatever reason, these poems didn t hit me on a deeper level.

  4. says:

    Her poems cut with the honesty of a child and the experience of woman beyond her years.I wish this edition did not correct her grammar I think grammar, especially in poetry is just as telling and revealing.

  5. says:

    Love the cover on this book she looks so MEAN It appears to me she had a sharp little wit that she mercilessly quelled Possibly this is what the cover artist was thinking of.

  6. says:

    She is a true talent Fucking amazing stuff.

  7. says:

    This collection was my first exposure to Emily Dickinson s writing While the poems were a bit hit and miss for me personally many were repetitive , I found some gems among them and certainly appreciate her place as one of America s great poets, through her sheer creativity and unique analogies alone I actually enjoyed the letters , finding in them many new glimpses of 19th century life, particularly from Emily s perspective as a New England woman The change in her letters from the bubbly excitement of a would be socialite, to the melancholy enigma of her later years is something I would like to learn about Evidently the deaths of loved ones brought some trauma to her life, and it may be she also suffered from depression and or mental health issues I shared some of the most memorable quotes in my blog post, Emily Dickinson in 10 Quotes I also recommend checking out the Emily Dickinson Museum website It has a ton of information to contextualize and clarify the letters for the modern reader.

  8. says:

    I have owned this book for several years, and I ve read and re read the poems over and over However, I never actually read the collection of her letters They read like the best 19th century literature Emily s letters to her various family and friends paint the portrait of a life devoted to the love she has for her friends, her delight in every flower and small creature in her gardens, and her spiritual musings and questioning From the first letters as a curious school girl to the last letter on the day before her death, bearing only two words Called Home this collection gave me the feeling of time travel and looking down at her life and inner thoughts from above I wish I could time travel and sit and have tea with Emily, and talk about her bees, and frogs, and birds, and flowers for hours.

  9. says:

    This book provides an excellent overview of Emily s life and career It also contains the best of her poetry and the most interesting of her letters according to the editor Interestingly, the majority of her poems were published posthumously.

  10. says:

    This was nice

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  • Library Binding
  • 0 pages
  • Selected Poems and Letters of Emily Dickinson
  • Emily Dickinson
  • English
  • 07 September 2019
  • 9780808577393

About the Author: Emily Dickinson

Emily Dickinson was an American poet who, despite the fact that less than a dozen of her nearly eighteen hundred poems were published during her lifetime, is widely considered one of the most original and influential poets of the 19th century.Dickinson was born to a successful family with strong community ties, she lived a mostly introverted and reclusive life After she studied at the Amherst