Emily Dickinson became legendary for her preoccupation with death. All her poems contain stanzas focusing on loss or loneliness, but the most striking ones talk particularly about death, specifically her own death and her own afterlife. Her fascination with the morose gives her poems a rare quality, and gives us insight into a mind we know very little about. What we do know is that Dickinson’s father left her a small amount of money when she was young. This allowed her to spend her time writing and lamenting, instead of seeking out a husband or a profession. Eventually, she limited her outside activities to going to church. In her early twenties, she began prayed and worshipped on her own. This final step to total seclusion clearly fueled her obsession with death, and with investigating the idea of an afterlife. In “Because I could not stop for Death”, Dickinson rides in a carriage with the personification of Death, showing the constant presence of death in her life. Because it has become so familiar, death is no longer a frightening presence, but a comforting companion. Despite this, Dickinson is still not above fear, showing that nothing is static and even the most resolute person is truly sure of anything. This point is further proven in “I heard a Fly buzz”, where a fly disrupts the last moment of Dickinson’s life. The fly is a symbol of death, and of uncertainty, because though it represents something certain—her impending death—it flies around unsure with a “stumbling buzz”. This again illustrates the changing nature of life, and even death. “This World is not Conclusion” is Dickinson’s swan song on the subject of afterlife. She confirms all her previous statements, but in a more r...
... middle of paper ...
...o curb the appetite that humans have to know the secrets of life and death. This, then, is the central theme of all her poems: Though she believes strongly in idea of an afterlife, even she understands that nothing is certain, but that a bit of logic and a large amount of faith will guide her through the chaotic journey towards her final resting place—wherever or whatever it may be.
Dickinson, Emily. "Because I could not stop for Death." Norton Anthology of English Literature. Ed. M.h. Abrams. New York: W.W. Norton and Company, Inc, 1993. 726.
Dickinson, Emily. "I Heard a Fly buzz." Norton Anthology of English Literature. Ed. M.h. Abrams. New York: W.W. Norton and Company, Inc, 1993. 727.
Dickinson, Emily. "The World is not Conclusion." Norton Anthology of English Literature. Ed. M.h. Abrams. New York: W.W. Norton and Company, Inc, 1993. 729.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Emily Dickinson's Obsession with Death Emily Dickinson's obsession with death has puzzled scholars for many decades. If a reader wanted to, he could put every one of Emily Dickinson's nearly 2,000 poems and letters (so many that later, they were assigned numbers for easier organization) into 4 categories: Love, death, pain and the self. The poems about death are the most captivating and puzzling, "The poems that issue from this spiritual exercise are among her most impressive," (Cunningham 45).... [tags: Papers]
792 words (2.3 pages)
- Emily Elizabeth Dickinson is known for being one of the greatest American poets. She is described as a death-obsessed writer whose poems embodied the truth and hidden humor about death. She proved that death is a mystery and it must be unveiled. Through her poem “If I Should Die”, Emily Dickinson confronts death peacefully. Her approach to death in this poem reflects her spirituality and defines her title as a metaphysical poet. Readers often conquer that her poems are an autobiography. She dealt with several losses from close family members and friends so she knew death well.... [tags: dead poems, emily dickinson, death obsession]
1718 words (4.9 pages)
- Brendan Schick Mr. Ingrassia English IV, Period 3 Due: November 3rd, 2015 The Themes, Styles, and Techniques of Emily Dickinson Emily Dickinson, one of the greatest American poets of the nineteenth century used many different themes, styles, and techniques that make her poetry so widely popular. The enigma that is Emily Dickinson continues to befuddle experts and leaves readers with a sense of deep, intimate connection through poetry. Even though she was a recluse, Emily Dickinson’s poems present universal themes that can communicate with the reader of the poems.... [tags: Poetry, Rhyme, Emily Dickinson, Iambic pentameter]
1463 words (4.2 pages)
- 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]
1630 words (4.7 pages)
- There are several important and interesting authors in the American Literature history to talk about in this paper. However, Emily Elizabeth Dickinson is one of the most fascinating authors that generates admiration by reading her life and poems. Even tough her poems were not completed and written on scraps of paper, she is considered one of the great geniuses of nineteenth-century American poetry. The main reason of this reputation is based on the fact that her poems are innovative. Her poetry is different because she uses different literacy aspects from her contemporary writers.... [tags: Emily Dickinson Essays]
1020 words (2.9 pages)
- Emily Elizabeth Dickinson was born on December 10,1830 in the quiet community of Amherst, Massachusetts (Davidson 247). She was the second born to Edward and Emily Norcross Dickinson (Davidson 247). Her older brother Austin and her younger sister Lavina lived in a reserved family headed by their authoritative father (Davidson 247). Emily’s mother was not “emotionally accessible,'; thought out there lives (Davidson 247). Their parents weren’t involved in their children’s lives.... [tags: Emily Dickinson Essays]
871 words (2.5 pages)
- Emily Dickinson is the epitome of the modern poet. Her poetry breaks from the traditional style with dashes to separate ideas. Dickinson, also, challenged the religious belief of her time. Growing up as a Puritan in Massachusetts, Emily Dickinson knew the bible, yet as an adult, she questioned that belief. Many of her poems seem focused on death; death of the body, death of the soul, death of the mind. Why was she so intrigued with death. The poems that embody this theme are: “Success is counted sweetest” (#112), “Safe in the Alabaster Chambers” (#124), “I like a look of Agony” (#339), “I felt a funeral in my brain” (#340), “Because I could not stop for death” (#479), and “I heard a Fly buzz... [tags: Literary Analysis ]
1526 words (4.4 pages)
- An Interpretation of Emily Dickinson's Poem I Felt a Funeral in My Brain Emily Dickinson was a reclusive individual that was rarely seen by anyone outside of her immediate family and few close friends. This solitude emerges in her poetry in the form of doom and gloom depictions. Dickinson seems to have a fascination with death as if death is a friendly character rather than a horrible image. It has been stated that Dickinson's obsession with death was a sign to others around her and her readers that she was struggling internally.... [tags: Dickinson I Felt a Funeral, in My Brain Essays]
447 words (1.3 pages)
- Emily Dickinson, the self-secluded poet from Amherst, is now considered one of the greatest American Poets. She, in breaking conventional grammar rules, created a new form of poetry, her own, to attain this title. Through the use of unconventional grammar styles Dickinson was able to create a poem, when read in the mind appears to be incomprehensible, but when read aloud is made clear to the reader. Dickinson also made use of common objects and emotions in her poems, which captivated the reader and allowed the reader to escape into a world created by her.... [tags: Biography Biographies Essays]
1337 words (3.8 pages)
- Death in Emily Dickenson With the thought of death, many people become terrified as if it were some creature lurking behind a door ready to capture them at any moment. Unlike many, Emily Dickinson was infatuated with death and sought after it only to try and help answer the many questions which she pondered so often. Her poetry best illustrates the answers as to why she wrote about it constantly. She explains her reason for writing poetry, “I had a terror I could tell to none-and so I sing, as the Boy does by the Burying Ground-because I am afraid.”(Johnson xxiii).... [tags: essays papers]
1321 words (3.8 pages)
- Yukio Mishima's The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea
- War Poets: Brooke, Sassoon, and Rosenberg
- W.H. Auden's Musee des Beaux Arts and Pieter Bruegel's The Fall of Icarus
- Roger Williams' A Key Into the Language of America
- Mary Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Women and Harriet Jacobs' Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl
- Lord Byron's Manfred