The, The Thing With Feathers, By Emily Dickinson Essay

The, The Thing With Feathers, By Emily Dickinson Essay

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From “‘Hope’ is the thing with feathers” to “Because I could not stop for Death” to “Tell all truth but tell it slant,” Emily Dickinson has been captivating readers with her brilliant imagery and witty words for over a century. Dickinson has astounded many with the breadth of universal emotions conveyed in her poems. Though Dickinson’s life was bound by the confinement of her time, she touched the heart of many with her poems, especially with “‘Hope’ is the thing with feathers,” where Dickinson manages to evoke emotion from her readers in each stanza through her use of tone, word choice, and figurative language.
To begin with, a general background of Dickinson, though her poems were brilliant, it was not until 1890 when her first volume of poems was published, that they were met with an enormous amount of success (Poetry Foundation, n.d.). Nuala O’Connor (2015), in a short article about some of Dickinson’s poems notes,
Her oeuvre is a large one and most of her work was done in secret – she didn’t share most of what she wrote. Ten or so poems were published in her lifetime, mostly without her consent. She often included poems with letters but, after her death, the poet’s sister Vinnie was surprised to find almost eighteen hundred individual poems in Dickinson’s bedroom, some of them bound into booklets by the poet. (para. 2).
Dickinson was born December 10, 1830, and died in May of 1886, at the age of fifty-five. She received education at Amherst Academy until the age of fifteen when she continued to Mount Holyoke Female Seminary (Poetry Foundation, n.d.). There she stayed a year until she departed for reasons that are not entirely clear (Poetry Foundation n.d.). At that time, the Holyoke Seminary would have been the highest lev...


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..., too, never asks for a crumb, but is the creator of the hope, which perches in the soul, the creator of the warmth that the bird holds and gives to all. The tone and word choice in both the second and third stanzas further promote Dickinson’s theme, hope will never dwindle or abandon a soul, no matter the size of the storm.
Dickinson’s life experiences provide a foundation for her work as a poet. It can be seen that her experiences shape the word choice, tone, and figurative language she uses. Her experience at school and passion for education provided her with the means to write such powerful poetry. Likewise, her home experience provided her with the emotional passion needed to create this poetry. Dickinson has rightfully earned her place in the halls of the great poets, and will likely remain one of the greatest poets known to humankind for centuries to come.

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