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Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: Erik (---.sbtnvt.adelphia.net)
Date: December 02, 2004 08:33PM

I'm having a hard time understanding the meaning of this poem by Emily Dickinson. Anyone willing to help explain the meaning behind it? Comments are appreciated.

I breathed enough to learn the trick,
And now, removed from air,
I simulate the breath so well,
That one, to be quite sure

The lungs are stirless, must descend
Among the cunning cells,
And touch the pantomime himself.
How cool the bellows feels!


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: Pam Adams (---.bus.csupomona.edu)
Date: December 02, 2004 09:08PM

Well, either she's really dead, or she feels dead- unconnected to the world. While ED did write poems from the point of view of dead people, I think that the latter is true in this case.

pam


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: Erik (---.sbtnvt.adelphia.net)
Date: December 02, 2004 11:09PM

makes since, any one else have comments?


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: lg (---.ca.charter.com)
Date: December 02, 2004 11:12PM

She's comparing her lungs to a bellows. The deeper meaning of the metaphor perhaps is that she is like dying embers and needs to breathe life into her own waning body.


Les


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: Hugh Clary (---.denver-04rh16rt.co.dial-access.att.net)
Date: December 03, 2004 01:21PM

I like her stuff better with the caps & emdashes. Some different words here also:


I breathed enough to take the Trick—
And now, removed from Air—
I simulate the Breath, so well—
That One, to be quite sure—

The Lungs are stirless—must descend
Among the Cunning Cells—
And touch the Pantomine—Himself,
How numb, the Bellows feels!


Pantomime is spelled incorrectly here. Did she mean a Person who pantomimes? God, perhaps? Or, just an error? And, we have 'take the trick' instead of learn it, plus 'numb' bellow, instead of 'cool.

That pesky comma after 'numb' is annoying. If she meant 'how numb the bellows feels', that would be different than, 'how numb: the bellows feels'.

Could be some kind of extended metaphor, sure, but I'm with Pam. Emmy is fixating on Death again.


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: Linda (---.cache.pol.co.uk)
Date: December 03, 2004 04:19PM

Is she running a breath = soul metaphor here?


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: Pam Adams (134.71.192.---)
Date: December 03, 2004 07:51PM

She certainly could be. That would go nicely with the 'I feel dead' idea.

pam

Maybe she really is dead- the lungs have stopped, but the mitochondria or whatever are still going strong.


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: Jose (---.proxy.aol.com)
Date: February 13, 2005 08:15PM

is this poem 1 or 2 Poems CAN YOU ANSERW BACK ASAP


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: lg (---.ca.charter.com)
Date: February 13, 2005 09:19PM

One poem, Jose.


Les


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: shorty (---.bhm.bellsouth.net)
Date: April 15, 2005 08:06PM

" The Bustle In A House" By: Emily Dickinson also any other poems about death. I have to research and analyse the poems for a 5 page research paper. thanks, shorty!


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: lg (---.ca.charter.com)
Date: April 15, 2005 08:31PM

Shorty, Dickinson has many poems about death. "I Heard a Fly Buzz When I Died", "Because I Could Not Stop for Death", and others.


Les


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: Hugh Clary (---.denver-03rh16rt-04rh15rt.co.dial-access.att.net)
Date: April 18, 2005 11:57AM


Re: Need help with Dickinson poem
Posted by: Gill Pell (217.205.243.---)
Date: May 04, 2005 07:54PM

Couldn't she could be talking about her work?




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