Emily Dickinson Poems

Emily Dickinson Poems - In the following poems, you’ll find the imaginative use of themes like death, liberty, beauty, and love.

Miss Dickinson (1830-1886) lived most of her life as a recluse, perhaps prompted by illnesses and deaths of loved ones. Because of her introverted ways, less than a dozen of her poems were actually published during her lifetime. And the existence of many of her writings were not discovered until after her death.

Emily Dickinson is now considered by many to be a major American poet or at the very least, a major contributor to the world of literature.





Emily Dickinson Poems



Because I could not stop for Death

Because I could not stop for Death -
He kindly stopped for me -
The Carriage held but just Ourselves -
And Immortality.

We slowly drove – He knew no haste
And I had put away
My labor and my leisure too,
For His Civility -

We passed the School, where Children strove
At Recess – in the Ring -
We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain -
We passed the Setting Sun -

Or rather – He passed Us -
The Dews drew quivering and chill -
For only Gossamer, my Gown -
My Tippet – only Tulle -

We paused before a House that seemed
A Swelling of the Ground -
The Roof was scarcely visible -
The Cornice – in the Ground -

Since then – ‘tis Centuries – and yet
Feels shorter than the Day
I first surmised the Horses’ Heads
Were toward Eternity -

********************

Death sets a thing significant

Death sets a thing significant
The eye had hurried by,
Except a perished creature
Entreat us tenderly

To ponder little workmanships
In crayon or in wool,
With “This was last her fingers did,”
Industrious until

The thimble weighed too heavy,
The stitches stopped themselves,
And then ‘t was put among the dust
Upon the closet shelves.

A book I have, a friend gave,
Whose pencil, here and there,
Had notched the place that pleased him, -
At rest his fingers are.

Now, when I read, I read not,
For interrupting tears
Obliterate the etchings
Too costly for repairs.

********************

Hope is the thing with feathers

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
The could abash 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.

********************

I died for beauty

I died for beauty, but was scarce
Adjusted in the tomb,
When one who died for truth was lain
In an adjoining room.

He questioned softly why I failed?
”for beauty,” I replied.
”And I for truth, - the two are one;
We brethren are,” he said.

And so, as kinsmen met a night,
We talked between the rooms,
Until the moss had reached our lips,
And covered up our names.

********************

If I can stop one heart from breaking

If I can stop one heart from 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.

********************

I’m nobody! Who are you?

I’m nobody! Who are you?
Are you nobody, too?
Then there’s a pair of us – don’t tell!
They’d banish us, you know.

How dreary to be somebody!
How public, like a frog
To tell your name the livelong day
To an admiring bog!

********************

No Rack can torture me

No Rack can torture me -
My Soul – at Liberty -
Behind this mortal Bone
There knits a bolder One -

You cannot prick with Saw -
Nor pierce with Cimitar -
Two Bodies – therefore be -
Bind One – The Other fly -

The Eagle of his Nest
No easier divest -
And gain the Sky
Than mayest Thou -

Except Thyself may be
Thine Enemy -
Captivity is Consciousness -
So’s Liberty -

********************

This is my letter to the world

This is my letter to the world,
That never wrote to me, -
The simple news that Nature told,
With tender majesty.

Her message is committed
To hands I cannot see;
For love of her, sweet countrymen,
Judge tenderly of me!

********************

Wild Nights!

Wild nights! Wild nights!
Were I with thee,
Wild nights should be
Our luxury!

Futile the winds
To a heart in port, -
Done with the compass,
Done with the chart.

Rowing in Eden.
Ah! the sea!
Might I but moor
Tonight in thee!




More Emily Dickinson poems:

I have a Bird in Spring and Spring is the Period on Spring Poems I.

To see the Summer Sky on Summer Poems I.

As Summer into Autumn slips and Nature XXVII on Autumn Poems I.

The Sky is low – the Clouds are mean on Winter Poems I.



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