In the third stanza, attention shifts back to the speaker, who has been observing her own death with all the strength of her remaining senses. The imagery drawn from war is most appropriate to the paradox and to the theme of the poem. When the mind is braced by labor and invention, the page of whatever book we read becomes luminous with manifold allusions. Because I could not stop for Death — Summary of the poem The speaker in the poem is too busy to approach death; therefore, death comes in the form of a gentleman to pick her up on a chariot. Dew was still present on the grass, indicating that it was early morning. In My Emily Dickinson, the original question Who was she? As Dickinson would say, the real life will begin after death. She has been describing a pleasant game of hide and seek, but she now anticipates that the game may prove deadly and that the fun could turn to terror if death's stare is revealed as being something murderous that brings neither God nor immortality.
Moving in and out of the death room as a nervous response to their powerlessness, the onlookers become resentful that others may live while this dear woman must die. This poem also has a major division and moves from affirmation to extreme doubt. The capital letters mark the emphasis to be given in words. As a vicious trickster, his rareness is a fraud, and if man's lowliness is not rewarded by God, it is merely a sign that people deserve to be cheated. They received a great response, but no more were released until 1955, when the rest of her poems were published. She is not willing to go on with the busy and the meaningless humdrum of this life. By the time she was twelve, her family moved to a house on Pleasant Street where they lived from 1840 to 1855.
The speaker now acknowledges that she has put her labor and leisure aside; she has given up her claims on life and seems pleased with her exchange of life for death's civility, a civility appropriate for a suitor but an ironic quality of a force that has no need for rudeness. The simile of a reed bending to water gives to the woman a fragile beauty and suggests her acceptance of a natural process. The borderline between Emily Dickinson's poems in which immortality is painfully doubted and those in which it is merely a question cannot be clearly established, and she often balances between these positions. Free essays available online are good but they will not follow the guidelines of your particular writing assignment. The first three lines echo standard explanations of the Bible's origin as holy doctrine, and the mocking tone implies skepticism. While free essays can be traced by Turnitin plagiarism detection program , our custom written essays will pass any plagiarism test. But the poem is effective because it dramatizes, largely through its metaphors of amputation and illumination, the strength that comes with convictions, and contrasts it with an insipid lack of dignity.
New York: New Directions, 1985, 2007 Copyright Notice: Please respect the fact that all material in Jacket magazine is copyright © Jacket magazine and the individual authors and copyright owners 1997—2010; it is made available here without charge for personal use only, and it may not be stored, displayed, published, reproduced, or used for any other purpose. As the fifth stanza ends, the tense moment of death arrives. The grave is only the resting place. Shakespeare to that extent is like the butterfly which cannot be grasped. The short analysis below attempts an answer to this question.
The contrast in her feelings is between relief that the woman is free from her burdens and the present horror of her death. What the essayist does here is to think of Emily Dickinson, if not as Emily Dickinson, at least to think of Emily Dickinson with Emily Dickinson, retrospectively questioning editorial issues from the hypothetical standpoint of the unpublished poet. Death knows no haste because he always has enough power and time. She uses personification to portray Death and Immortality as characters. Emily did not like going to church because she didn't think of herself as being very religious. The original CliffsNotes study guides offer expert commentary on major themes, plots, characters, literary devices, and historical background -- all to help you gain greater insight into great works you're bound to study for school or pleasure.
The bird found the dew upon a blade of grass and drank it. She has set down all she wanted to do in life, and willingly entered the carriage with Death and Immortality. She compares the wings to oars that row the bird home. Even though Gertrude and Emily diverged in personalities and destinies, they had in common to be American poets whose works confront patriarchal authority in its grammatical expression. In what we will consider the second stanza, the scene widens to the vista of nature surrounding burial grounds.
This glimpses that the speaker is resting somewhere and it is her soul travelling in the chariot. Rather, it raises the possibility that God may not grant the immortality that we long for. There is a mystic separation between poetic vision and ordinary living. The horse is time that pulls the narrator and her companions. The miracle before her is the promise of resurrection, and the miracle between is the quality of her own being — probably what God has given her of Himself — that guarantees that she will live again. She is getting ready to guide herself towards death. The tone becomes one of disappointment, as the author realizes that death is not all she thought it would be.
Emily only left home to attend Mount Holyoke Female Seminary for two semesters. However, the last three lines portray her life as a living hell, presumably of conflict, denial, and alienation. In the next four lines, the speaker struggles to assert faith. New York: Penguin, 2003 Howe, Susan. Since interpretation of some of the details is problematic, readers must decide for themselves what the poem's dominant tone is.
Once this dramatic irony is visible, one can see that the first stanza's characterization of God's rareness and man's grossness is ironic. The truth, rather, is that life is part of a single continuity. The greatest charm of the poem is in its ambiguity and the elusive nature of the heart of the meaning of the poem. These hopes help us to take our lives forward, and wait for the happy times that are followed by the sorrowed ones. The presence of immortality in the carriage may be part of a mocking game or it may indicate some kind of real promise. The speaker, like any human being, cannot wait death on her choice.