Emily Dickinson's The Goal

Emily Dickinson's The Goal

Length: 608 words (1.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
Emily Dickinson's "The Goal" discusses her theory that each human being lives each day striving to obtain one specific goal. She theorizes that each individual longs to fulfill one specific achievement whether "expressed" to others or is "still" (l. 2) and locked into the individual's heart.

Dickinson says that it is an inevitable part of human nature to live this way, whether we believe so or not, and have not been able to recognize the specific theme of our life as it is "admitted scarcely to itself" (l. 5). She speculates that we attempt to cover our ambitions from others because we lack "credibility's temerity" (l. 7) and are scared that we are less accomplished than we should be to even imagine so great of expectations. She also brings out that not only are we wary of sharing our dream to others, but we ourselves approach it "adored with caution" (l. 9).

Even though we ourselves doubt our ability to achieve the extent of our dream, Dickinson says that the further away and the less attainable, the more desirable of an objective it becomes. She says that we chase after our goal like someone chasing after "the rainbow's raiment" (l. 11) which we continue to pursue for its beauty and the pot of gold, even though we know that it is only an appealing myth and the end of the rainbow does not truly exist at all.

She compares our faith in achieving our goal as someone reaching "a brittle heaven" (l. 9) and living their lives in blind faith that they will ultimately achieve that goal. We all live our lives in part expecting to achieve utopia and to see the face of God at our death, but occasional we question the rationale of this heart's desire. We do however have to believe on the basis that without that belief, living a moral life and having a supernatural relationship would be ludicrous without that end reward of sitting at the feet of our maker. Likewise, we should live our lives with a mortal goal and faith that we will achieve it. If we approach our earthly desires in this manner, we will be more disciplined, and will seek to achieve this goal with all costs.

Dickinson says that we should be inspired by "the saints' slow diligence" (l. 15) who have gone before us all working towards their goal of spreading the gospel and doing good works.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Emily Dickinson's The Goal." 123HelpMe.com. 14 Nov 2019

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

Analysis Of Emily Dickinson 's ' I Am A Loaded Gun ' Essay

- When examining the works and life of Emily Dickinson it is important to apply feminist theory. Her two works “I’m wife—I’ve finished that” and “My life had stood—a loaded gun” are easily viewed under this theory. These two poems will be critically examined to reveal the nature of her culture in the distant past. The feminist theory aims to view literature from the nature of gender inequality. In order to understand these works and life in her day, the reader must first look at the average lifestyle of a woman in the 1800s and then Emily Dickinson’s life....   [tags: Woman, Marriage, Poetry, Emily Dickinson]

Research Papers
2258 words (6.5 pages)

Emily Dickinson on the Addictive Process Essay

- Emily Dickinson on the Addictive Process Awareness of Emily Dickinson has grown and deepened over the course of the twentieth century such that the "delightful" andplatitude-laden verses, as they were initially viewed, have provento be rich, often ironic, highly complex explorations of one poet'ssubjectivity. Dickinson's poetry today challenges us to confrontaspects of our own inner processes in relation to psychologicalpain, death, the world and possible -- though not undoubted --transcendence of it, and frustrated desire, to name just a few ofthe themes....   [tags: Emily Dickinson Authors Writers Essays]

Research Papers
3588 words (10.3 pages)

Essay on Emily Dickinson's Use of Loss in Poem 67 and Poem 1036

- Emily Dickinson's Use of Loss in Poem 67 and Poem 1036 Many of Emily Dickinson's poems touch on topics dealing with loss. While loss is generally considered a sad or unfortunate thing, Dickinson uses this theme to explain and promote the positive aspects of absence. Throughout many of her poems, one can see clearly that she is an advocate of respecting and accepting the state of being without. Dickinson implies that through these types of losses, one can gain a richer and stronger appreciation for both success and belongings....   [tags: Emily Dickinson Poem 67 Poem 1036]

Free Essays
815 words (2.3 pages)

Essay on Emily Dickinson’s Poem 67, Poem 1036, and Poem 870

- Absence and Loss in Emily Dickinson’s Poem 67, Poem 1036, and Poem 870 Emily Dickinson often refers to loss and absence in her poetry. It is not often seen as strictly negative though. It is, however, seen as inevitable. It is not always inevitable in the negative sense though. It is sometimes seen as necessary in order to understand life. There seems to be an overall theme of loss being a part of life. This theme can be seen upon examining poems 67, 1036, and 870. Poem 67 is a good example of Dickinson portraying absence as positive....   [tags: Emily Dickinson Poem 67 1036 870]

Research Papers
797 words (2.3 pages)

Emily Dickinson’s Themes, Language, and Technique Essay

- When a reader hears the name Emily Dickinson, they think about a female who wrote poetry that has been well known for years and years. Little do they know that Emily Dickinson founded American Literature, and started a whole revolution of poetry. The technique Dickinson used to write her poetry was never before seen and was the cornerstone of her writings. Major themes, Figurative Language, and Literary Technique used by Emily Dickinson were all of her characteristics of her towering achievement in American poetry....   [tags: Poets, Poetry, American Literature]

Research Papers
1873 words (5.4 pages)

Work of Emily Dickinson Essay

- Dickinson said in a letter, "All men say 'what' to me"; readers are still saying "What?" in response to some of her poems. Emily did not write for her time, but for the time ahead of her, the time that would be ready for her. Her off-rhyme, erratic meter, and skewed grammar; makes her an innovator of the poetic language, and influencer to poets after her time. Her originality places her in her own era of poetry. To read her thoroughly, you must read her poetry at least 50 times, and each time for a different meaning....   [tags: Poetry Poets]

Free Essays
1499 words (4.3 pages)

Emily Dickinson And Edgar Allen Poe Essay

- American authors thrived in the 19th century more than any other time in history. Two central figures of this American Renaissance were Emily Dickinson and Edgar Allen Poe. These two authors primarily wrote dark fiction about the subjects of death, love, and nature. Not only is the general subject matter between Dickinson and Poe similar, but there are also parallels between their speakers. Many of their works contain a first-person narrator who displays drastic psychological states and is aware of an overwhelming presence of death....   [tags: Edgar Allan Poe, The Tell-Tale Heart]

Research Papers
1816 words (5.2 pages)

Emily Dickinson Essay example

- The complex fate of human beings in this tragic yet beutiful world and the possible fortunes of the human spirit in a subsequent life is what interests us all in life, and this is the central theme in most of Emily Dickinsons work. In her enticing poetry, Emily establishes a dialectical relationship between reality and imagination, the known and the unknown. By ordering the stages of life to include death and eternity, Dickinson suggests the interconnected and mutually determined nature of the finite and infinite....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
727 words (2.1 pages)

Hollowness in Emily Dickinson’s Poetic Discourse Essay example

- Hollowness in Emily Dickinson’s Poetic Discourse Much has been said about Emily Dickinson’s mystifying poetry and private life, especially during the years 1860-63. Allegedly it was during these years that the poetess, at the most prolific phase of her career, withdrew from society, began to wear her “characteristic” white dress and suffered a series of psychotic episodes. Dickinson tended to “theatricalize” herself by speaking through a host of personae in her poems and by “fictionalizing” her inner life as a gothic romance (Gilbert 584)....   [tags: Biography Biographies Essays]

Research Papers
3878 words (11.1 pages)

Essay on Emily Dickinson: Transcendentalist Experience Through Imagination

- Emily Dickinson: Transcendentalist Experience Through Imagination The early 19th century ideas of transcendentalism, which were introduced by Ralph Emerson and David Thoreau, where man as an individual becomes spiritually consumed with nature and himself through experience are contrasted by Emily Dickinson, who chose to branch off this path by showing that a transcendentalist experience could be achieved through imagination alone. These three monumental writers set the boundaries for this new realm of thought....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
1505 words (4.3 pages)

Related Searches

Likewise we should constantly be striving for our goal, no matter how unrealistic they may appear, in slow and persistent diligence so that we will be more capable to achieve it. Dickinson says that it is very possible to live life to its fullest striving every day towards this goal, and have it still be "ungained (l. 17)." She says this not to discourage us in our quest, but rather to inspire us to influence all the people who will proceed us with similar goals. She says that like we have observed the saints and their diligence, others may observe our work and be inspired and more enabled to achieve their goal because of our quest.

She also mentions that our ultimate reward for living a determined, focused life will be when we die, having achieved our goal or not, because "eternity enables the endeavoring again" (l. 19-20). Whether you interpret this last line to mean that your earthly desire will be fulfilled coincided with spiritual fulfillment and enlightenment, or that the grandeur of heaven will be so magnificent that your seemingly unattainable goal in life will appear petty, Dickinson is successful in her attempts to encourage others to greatness.
Return to 123HelpMe.com