THEME ON EMILY DICKINSON

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Poems of Emily Dickinson

Thesis of my paper that I am trying to prove to the reader is that Emily Dickinson is a brilliant extraordinary writer. She talks about mortality and death within her life and on paper in her poem works.

Although she lived a seemingly secluded life, Emily Dickinson's many encounters with death influenced many of her poems and letters. Perhaps one of the most ground breaking and inventive poets in American history, Dickinson has become as well known for her bizarre and eccentric life as for her incredible poems and letters. Numbering over 1,700, her poems highlight the many moments in a 19th century New England woman's life, including the deaths of some of her most beloved friends and family, most of which occurred in a short period of time (Introduction, Paragraph 2).

In many short poems, several readers or critics of Dickinson point out her methods of exploring several topics in "circumference," as she says in her own words. Death is perhaps one of the best examples of this exploration and examination. Other than one trip to Washington and Philadelphia, several excursions to Boston to see a doctor and a few short years in school, Dickinson never left her hometown of Amherst, Massachusetts. In the latter part of her life she rarely left her large brick house, and communicated even to her beloved sister through a door often left "slightly ajar." This seclusion gave her a reputation for eccentricity to the local towns' people, and perhaps increased her interest in death (The Belle Of Amherst, Dickinson).

Some knew Dickinson in Amherst as, "the New England mystic,". Her only contact to her few friends and correspondents was through a series of letters, seen as some authors and critics to be equal not only in number to her poetic works, but in literary genius as well (Introduction Dickinson).

Explored thoroughly in her works, death seems to be a dominating theme through out Dickinson's life. Dickinson, although secluded and isolated, had a few encounters with love; two perhaps serious affairs were documented in her letters and poems. But, since Dickinson's life was so private the exact identity of these people remains unsure. What is known, is during the Civil War, worried for her friends and families' lives, death increased in frequency to be a dominant theme in her writings. After 1878, the year of her influential father's death, (a treasurer of Amherst College, and a member of the Congress), this theme increased with each passing of friend or family, peaking perhaps with the death of the two men she loved (The Belle of Amherst, Dickinson).
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