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Emily Dickinson

(1830-1886)

On December 10, 1830, Emily Dickinson was born to Edward Dickinson, a lawyer, and his wife Emily in Amherst Massachussetts. Dickinson lived in Amherst in her father's house with her parents and her sister for the rest of her life. Dickinson's younger years were full of social activities. She attended the local schools as well as Mount Holyoke Female Seminary. After 1855, however, she began to be more and more reclusive, leaving Amherst only twice to go to Boston. She also began to see fewer people at her home. After her death in 1886 after a two year illness her poems were discovered. Her sister and one of her few friends began to have edited selections of her poetry published. It was not until 1955 that her complete poems were made available in a variorum edition published by Harvard University Press. This three volume set included all known manuscripts of her works. Although only seven of her poems were published, anonymously, in her lifetime, Dickinson's work is now widely known and appreciated.

  • 'T was just this time last year I died.
       'T was just this time last year I died.
  • A Bird Came Down
       bird came down the walk:
  • A Clock Stopped -- Not The Mantel's
       A clock stopped -- not the mantel's
  • A door just opened on a street
       A door just opened on a street--
  • A drop fell on the apple tree
       A drop fell on the apple tree
  • A light exists in spring
       A light exists in spring
  • A little road not made man
       A little road not made of man,
  • A long, long sleep, a famous sleep
       A long, long sleep, a famous sleep
  • A narrow fellow in the grass
       A narrow fellow in the grass
  • A shady friend for torrid days
       A shady friend for torrid days
  • A thought went up my mind to-day
       A thought went up my mind to-day
  • After a hundred years
       After a hundred years
  • After Great Pain, A Formal Feeling Comes
       After Great Pain, A Formal Feeling Comes
  • Ample make this bed.
       Ample make this bed.
  • An everywhere of silver,
       An everywhere of silver,
  • Because I could not stop for Death,
       Because I could not stop for Death,
  • Before you thought of spring,
       Before you thought of spring,
  • Death sets a thing of signigicant
       Death sets a thing significant
  • Delight becomes pictorial
       Delight becomes pictorial
  • Departed to the judgment,
       Departed to the judgment,
  • Each life converges to some centre
       Each life converges to some centre
  • Elysium is as far as to
       Elysium is as far as to
  • First Robin
       I dreaded that first robin so,
  • For each ecstatic instant
       For each ecstatic instant
  • God gave a loaf to every bird,
       God gave a loaf to every bird,
  • God made a little gentian;
       God made a little gentian;
  • God permit industrious angels
       God permit industrious angels
  • Going to him! Happy letter! Tell him--
       Going to him! Happy letter! Tell him--
  • Good night! which put the candle out?
       Good night! which put the candle out?
  • He fumbles at your spirit
       He fumbles at your spirit
  • Heaven is what I cannot reach!
       Heaven is what I cannot reach!
  • Her final summer was it,
       Her final summer was it,
  • Hope is the thing with feathers
       Hope is the thing with feathers
  • I breathed enough to learn the trick,
       I breathed enough to learn the trick,
  • I cannot live with you,
       I cannot live with you,
  • I died for beauty but was scarce
       I died for beauty but was scarce
  • I felt a cleaving in my mind
       I felt a cleaving in my mind
  • I felt a funeral in my brain,
       I felt a funeral in my brain,
  • I found the phrase to every thought
       I found the phrase to every thought
  • I had been hungry all the years-
       I had been hungry all the years-
  • I had no time to hate, because
       I had no time to hate, because
  • I heard a fly buzz when I died;
       I heard a fly buzz when I died;
  • I know a place where summer strives
       I know a place where summer strives
  • I like to see it lap the miles,
       I like to see it lap the miles,
  • I lived on dread; to those who know
       I lived on dread; to those who know
  • I measure every grief I meet
       I measure every grief I meet
  • I ment to find her when I came;
       I meant to find her when I came;
  • I never hear the word "escape"
       I never hear the word "escape"
  • I never saw a moor,
       I never saw a moor,
  • I stepped from plank to plank
       I stepped from plank to plank
  • I taste a liquor never brewed
       I taste a liquor never brewed,
  • I went to heaven,--
       I went to heaven,--
  • I years had been from home,
       I years had been from home,
  • I'll tell you how the sun rose, --
       I'll tell you how the sun rose, --
  • I'm nobody! Who are you?
       I'm nobody! Who are you?
  • If I can stop one heart from breaking,
       If I can stop one heart from breaking,
  • If you were coming in the fall,
       If you were coming in the fall,
  • It dropped so low in my regard
       It dropped so low in my regard
  • It is an honorable thought,
       It is an honorable thought,
  • It struck me every day
       It struck me every day
  • It was not death, for I stood up,
       It was not death, for I stood up,
  • It's All I have to bring to-day,
       It's All I have to bring to-day,
  • It's like the light, --
       It's like the light, --
  • Like trains of cars on tracks of plush
       Like trains of cars on tracks of plush
  • Me! Come! My dazzled face
       Me! Come! My dazzled face
  • My life closed twice before its close;
       My life closed twice before its close;
  • My nosegays are for captives;
       My nosegays are for captives;
  • Nature rarer uses yellow
       Nature rarer uses yellow
  • Nature, the gentlest mother,
       Nature, the gentlest mother,
  • Not in this world to see his face
       Not in this world to see his face
  • Of all the souls that stand create
       Of all the souls that stand create
  • One need not be a chamber to be haunted,
       One need not be a chamber to be haunted,
  • Our journey had advanced;
       Our journey had advanced;
  • Pain has an element of blank;
       Pain has an element of blank;
  • Presentiment is that long shadow on the lawn
       Presentiment is that long shadow on the lawn
  • Safe in their alabaster chambers,
       Safe in their alabaster chambers,
  • She rose to his requirement, dropped
       She rose to his requirement, dropped
  • She sweeps with many-colored brooms,
       She sweeps with many-colored brooms,
  • So bashful when I spied her,
       So bashful when I spied her,
  • So proud she was to die
       So proud she was to die
  • Success is Counted Sweetest
       Success is counted sweetest
  • The braind within its groove
       The brain within its groove
  • The bustle in a house
       The bustle in a house
  • The cricket sang
       The cricket sang,
  • The day came slow, till five o' clock
       The day came slow, till five o'clock
  • The dying need but little, dear,--
       The dying need but little, dear,--
  • The heart asks pleasure first
       The heart asks pleasure first
  • The nearest dream recedes, unrealized.
       The nearest dream recedes, unrealized.
  • The only ghost I ever saw
       The only ghost I ever saw
  • The pedigree of honey
       The pedigree of honey
  • The show is not the show,
       The show is not the show,
  • The sky is low, the clouds are mean,
       The sky is low, the clouds are mean,
  • The thought beneath so slight a film
       The thought beneath so slight a film
  • The White Heat
       Dare you see a Soul at the White Heat?
  • The wind begun to rock the grass
       The wind begun to rock the grass
  • The wind trapped like a tired man,
       The wind tapped like a tired man,
  • There is no frigate like a book
       There is no frigate like a book
  • There's a certain slant of light,
       There's a certain slant of light,
  • There's been a death in the opposite house
       There's been a death in the opposite house
  • They dropped like flakes
       They dropped like flakes, they dropped like stars,
  • They say that 'time assuages,'--
       They say that 'time assuages,'--
  • This is my letter to the world,
       This is my letter to the world,
  • This is the land the sunset washes,
       This is the land the sunset washes,
  • Tie the strings to my life, my Lord,
       Tie the strings to my life, my Lord,
  • To my quick ear the leaves conferred;
       To my quick ear the leaves conferred;
  • Two butterflies went out at noon
       Two butterflies went out at noon
  • Victory comes late,
       Victory comes late,
  • We like march, his shoes are purple,
       We like March, his shoes are purple,
  • We outgrow love like other things
       We outgrow love like other things
  • We play at paste,
       We play at paste,
  • Wild Nights! Wild Nights!
       Wild Nights! Wild Nights!
  • Woodpecker, The
       His bill an auger is,
  • You left me, sweet, two legacies,--
       You left me, sweet, two legacies,--