Analysis Of The Poem ' After Great Pain ' By Emily Dickinson Essay

Analysis Of The Poem ' After Great Pain ' By Emily Dickinson Essay

Length: 1064 words (3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The poem, “After Great Pain”, by Emily Dickinson, is one that conveys an inner struggle of emotion and the process that a person goes through after experiencing suffering or pain. Through this poem, Dickinson utilizes physical reactions to allude to the emotional pain that can make people feel numb and empty. Included in this poem is an array of literary devices, such as oxymorons, similes, and personification. These devices help show how death and grief can be confronted, whether it be by giving into the pain or by regaining emotional strength, letting go, and moving on with life. As we work on the project, we discuss multiple aspects of the poem and how the structure and diction alludes the meaning of the poem.
In the first stanza, Emily Dickinson describes emotional turmoil as a precedent to physical numbness. Dickinson implies how someone can feel that all days are the same when they are overwhelmed with emotions, especially dismal and grueling ones. This imagery can best be seen when she relates the feeling of loneliness and isolation to being concealed “like Tombs”. The speaker 's emotional numbness slowly infects the heart and causes it to become distant and hardened toward reality. Since the heart is most commonly associated with feeling and emotion, the stiffness represents the “death” of emotion. The use of personification allows those who read the poem to relate due to the universal qualities and connotations of the “stiff Heart”. The speaker also utilizes religious allusions and sarcasm to compare her pain to that of Christ’s when he was nailed to the cross.
As can be seen in the second stanza, the poem then shifts from expressing a multitude of emotions to an expression of numbness and loss of humanity. When "the Fe...


... middle of paper ...


...ire being which can lead to death being chosen as the permanent solution to the pain.
Overall, the poem “After Great Pain” by Emily Dickinson is describing the process of suffering and going through pain as dehumanizing, agonizing, and prolonged. It is distinguished by its comparison and reference towards physical pain in order to portray the pain associated with emotion. Like many of Dickinson’s other poems, it leaves the reader uncomfortable and lacks closure due to its notable use of dashes. This portrays how she essentially leaves it up to the reader to decide what will result in attempting to deal with and possibly overcome pain. As Dickinson, like every other living human being, has a certain sense of uncertainty in regards to what exists after this death, she makes her uncertainty apparent throughout the poem, especially at its conclusion of “the letting go-”.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Nature in the Works of Emily Dickinson Essay

- Nature is the most beautiful places for anyone to enjoy peace and stability in the human minds. Emily Dickinson is a naturalist poet that she wants the world to know that peace does exist in the human world and she wants to tell the world. Dickinson's poems are mostly written by "nature", "love", and "death" according to Anna Dunlap in her analysis. Dickinson's sister, Lavinia, is the one who published Dickinson's work, on her first attempt the editor that was responsible was taking her sweet time....   [tags: literary analysis, Emily Dickinson]

Better Essays
1384 words (4 pages)

Analysis Of Emily Dickinson 's Poetry Essay

- Emily Dickinson once stated “If I read a book and it makes my whole body so cold no fire can warm me I know that is poetry. If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry. These are the only way I know it. Is there any other way?” (Emily Dickinson Museum) She produced some eighteen hundred poems and letter, but very few were published before her death. She was described as an introvert and solitary sharing her work with only family and a few closes friends. (PoemHunter) Many of Dickinson’s works had themes of that examined pain, grief, mortality, loss, and art....   [tags: Emily Dickinson, Poetry, Emily Dickinson Museum]

Better Essays
936 words (2.7 pages)

Essay on The Impact Of Emily Dickinson On Poetry

- IMPACT OF EMILY DICKINSON ON POETRY Impact of Emily Dickinson on Poetry Minyue Dai Shenzhen Middle School . Emily Dickinson is an American poet, born in Amherst, Massachusetts. Her aristocratic family provided high-quality education and living standard for her, but in fact she lived an isolated life in most years. According to Bianchi, Martha Dickinson, 1970, Emily Dickinson was a prolific private poet, fewer than a dozen of her nearly 1,800 poems were published during her lifetime....   [tags: Mind, Poetry, Thought, Emily Dickinson]

Better Essays
830 words (2.4 pages)

Analysis Of Emily Dickinson 's ' Emily ' Essay

- Next to invisible, Emily Dickinson was unknown and unrecognized as a poet in her lifetime, like many authors she found her way into English books long after her death. She is now seen as one of our most treasured poets, and according to some, one of the greatest lyric poets of all times. It is many in the last five decades that books, essays and analyze began to stack up in their mutual attempt to explain her work and her life. Generally seen as being the manifestation of suppressed emotions, Dickinson’s poetry is viewed as a sort of admission and draws the critical eye like the Shakespearean sonnets....   [tags: Death, Afterlife, Life, Emily Dickinson]

Better Essays
1630 words (4.7 pages)

The Death Of Emily Dickinson Essay

- Death. It is such a hard work to hear. Nobody likes hearing or learning about death, but it is a natural occurrence of life that everyone deals with. Specifically speaking, whenever death is brought up in the context of American Literature, Emily Dickinson is the first poet to come mind. It is easy to look at one of her claustrophobic poems and misinterpret the true message she wants readers to receive. Upon further analysis of these disturbingly detailed works, a reader like myself will find that not only is Dickinson obsessed with death, but also truth, religion, and suffering....   [tags: Poetry, Emily Dickinson, Life, Suffering]

Better Essays
1108 words (3.2 pages)

Analysis Of Emily Dickinson 's ' The Stroke ' Essays

- Rita Dove is one of America’s finest poets. “The Stroke” is a poem from one of her four books of poetry called, Thomas and Beulah, which was awarded the Pulitzer Prize. Rita. “The Stroke” demonstrates how our insights vary over time. Personification and imagery are two ways the poet uses to give examples to talk about an event in one’s life. In contrast to Dove, Emily Dickinson was also a very successful American Poet. She wrote more than eighteen hundred poems and about a dozen of them were published....   [tags: Poetry, Life, Emily Dickinson, Rita Dove]

Better Essays
719 words (2.1 pages)

Analysis of Emily Dickinson's The Bustle in a House Essay

- Analysis of Emily Dickinson's The Bustle in a House The Bustle in a House is a poem by Emily Dickinson about the painful loss one feels after the death of a loved one. Dickinson was quite familiar with the kind of pain expressed in her poem. Her father, mother, nephew, and three close friends, all died within an eight-year period. It is no small wonder that a common theme in Dickinson s poetry is death. She uses many literary devices, including structure, imagery, figurative language, sound devices, and capitalization; to convey the hurt one experiences when a loved one passes on....   [tags: Dickinson Bustle in a House Essays]

Better Essays
661 words (1.9 pages)

Explication of Emily Dickinson's I Felt a Funeral in My Brain Essay

- Explication of Emily Dickinson's "I Felt a Funeral in My Brain" Works Cited Not Included In the poem "I Felt a Funeral in My Brain" Emily Dickinson exposes a person's intense anguish and suffering as they sink into a state of extreme madness. The poem is a carefully constructed analysis of the speaker's own mental experience. Dickinson uses the image of a funeral-service to symbolize the death of the speaker's sanity. The poem is terrifying for the reader as it depicts a realization of the collapse of one's mental stability, which is horrifying for most....   [tags: Poetry Poem Dickinson Analysis Essays]

Better Essays
872 words (2.5 pages)

Analysis Of Emily Dickinson 's ' I Am A Great Poet ' Essay

- To be a great poet like Emily Dickinson, on needs to be strikingly unique and innovative. During her existence, it was difficult for writers to go against and break societal traditions, however Emily ignored the traditions. In her Pocket poems she uses simple language different from other poets like Walt Whitman, who uses pretentious and strenuous language, which makes it difficult to understand, yet still very captivating writing. Emily poems are mostly eight lines or less with much meaning in every line....   [tags: Poetry, Emily Dickinson, Woods, Wild Night]

Better Essays
1455 words (4.2 pages)

Analysis of Dickinson’s Pain has an Element of Blank Essay

- Analysis of Dickinson’s Pain has an Element of Blank    Although cryptic in language and structure, Dickinson gives her work an instinctually vivid sense of emotion.  Her examination of the feeling of pain focuses in on only a few of the subtler nuances of pain that are integral parts of the experience.  She draws in on an "Element of Blank" that she introduces in her opening line.  In exploring pain, she proposes that this "blankness" is a self-propagating force that is subject to the dynamic forces of time, history and perception, but only to an extent....   [tags: Element Blank]

Free Essays
1238 words (3.5 pages)