Poems by Emily Dickinson

also known as: Emily Elizabeth Dickinson

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A little road not made of man,
A wounded deer leaps highest,
Alter? When the hills do.
Angels in the early morning
As children bid the guest good-night,
Belshazzar had a letter, --
Delight becomes pictorial
Glee! The great storm is over!
Have you got a brook in your little heart,
I asked no other thing,
I had no time to hate, because
I have no life but this,
I know a place where summer strives
I taste a liquor never brewed,
If I can stop one heart from breaking,
If I should die,
If you were coming in the fall,
Is Heaven a physician?
Much madness is divinest sense
New feet within my garden go,
On this long storm the rainbow rose,
One dignity delays for all,
Our share of night to bear,
Perhaps you'd like to buy a flower?
Presentiment is that long shadow on the lawn
Safe in their alabaster chambers,
So bashful when I spied her,
The bee is not afraid of me,
The brain within its groove
The heart asks pleasure first,
The one that could repeat the summer day
The pedigree of honey
There's a certain slant of light,
To fight aloud is very brave,
Two swimmers wrestled on the spar
Upon the gallows hung a wretch,
Whether my bark went down at sea,
Who robbed the woods,
Your riches taught me poverty.
He ate and drank the precious words,
There is no frigate like a book
A charm invests a face
A Clock Stopped -- Not The Mantel's;
Ample make this bed.
I'll tell you how the sun rose, --
A death-blow is a life-blow to some
A dew sufficed itself
A light exists in spring
Fate slew him, but he did not drop;
A modest lot, a fame petite,
A murmur in the trees to note,
A poor torn heart, a tattered heart,
A face devoid of love or grace,
I meant to have but modest needs,
A sepal, petal, and a thorn
Some keep the Sabbath going to church;
A shady friend for torrid days
A sickness of this world it most occasions
Sweet is the swamp with its secrets,
Could mortal lip divine
An awful tempest mashed the air,
A thought went up my mind to-day
A throe upon the features
The wind begun to rock the grass
A toad can die of light!
A train went through a burial gate,
What mystery pervades a well!
A word is dead
Adrift! A little boat adrift!
Afraid? Of whom am I afraid?
The murmuring of bees has ceased;
Within my reach!
When I was small, a woman died.
Our lives are Swiss, --
I'm wife; I've finished that,
Come slowly, Eden!
An altered look about the hills;
As by the dead we love to sit,
As imperceptibly as grief
As far from pity as complaint,
We never know how high we are
Departed to the judgment,
At half-past three a single bird
The night was wide, and furnished scant
At least to pray is left, is left.
Her final summer was it,
Of bronze and blaze
The morns are meeker than they were,
The sky is low, the clouds are mean,
Before the ice is in the pools,
You left me, sweet, two legacies, --
Bless God, he went as soldiers,
I started early, took my dog,
Just lost when I was saved!
All overgrown by cunning moss,
Softened by Time's consummate plush,
Of all the souls that stand create
The spider as an artist
Drab habitation of whom?
For each ecstatic instant
Proud of my broken heart since thou didst break it,
A door just opened on a street --
Could I but ride indefinite,
Not knowing when the dawn will come
When night is almost done,
The day came slow, till five o'clock,
There's something quieter than sleep
Apparently with no surprise
Death is a dialogue between
Death is like the insect
A deed knocks first at thought,
Who never wanted, -- maddest joy
It dropped so low in my regard
Let me not mar that perfect dream
Drowning is not so pitiful
I heard a fly buzz when I died;
The sun kept setting, setting still;
Each that we lose takes part of us;
No rack can torture me,
That is solemn we have ended, --
God gave a loaf to every bird,
Step lightly on this narrow spot!
I never hear the word "escape"
Essential oils are wrung:
On this wondrous sea,
The cricket sang,
Except the heaven had come so near,
Except to heaven, she is nought;
The soul selects her own society,
I stepped from plank to plank
Experiment to me
Faith is a fine invention
Far from love the Heavenly Father
Tie the strings to my life, my Lord,
Father, I bring thee not myself, --
Few get enough, -- enough is one;
Ashes denote that fire was;
I had no cause to be awake,
Forbidden fruit a flavor has
Heaven is what I cannot reach!
There is a word
Frequently the woods are pink,
Are friends delight or pain?
God made a little gentian;
My cocoon tightens, colors tease,
One need not be a chamber to be haunted,
Given in marriage unto thee,
Going to heaven!
On such a night, or such a night,
Went up a year this evening!
Good night! which put the candle out?
The leaves, like women, interchange
I measure every grief I meet
He put the belt around my life, --
He touched me, so I live to know
Heart not so heavy as mine,
Heart, we will forget him!
High from the earth I heard a bird;
Hope is a subtle glutton;
Hope is the thing with feathers
How dare the robins sing,
How still the bells in steeples stand,
I had been hungry all the years;
I breathed enough to learn the trick,
I bring an unaccustomed wine
I died for beauty, but was scarce
I felt a funeral in my brain,
I found the phrase to every thought
I gained it so,
I had a guinea golden;
I have a king who does not speak;
I have not told my garden yet,
I know that he exists
I lived on dread; to those who know
I many times thought peace had come,
I meant to find her when I came;
I never lost as much but twice,
I never saw a moor,
I noticed people disappeared,
I read my sentence steadily,
I reason, earth is short,
I shall know why, when time is over,
I think just how my shape will rise
I went to heaven, --
I went to thank her,
I wish I knew that woman's name,
I wonder if the sepulchre
I worked for chaff, and earning wheat
I'm Nobody! Who are you?
I've got an arrow here;
I've seen a dying eye
If anybody's friend be dead,
If I may have it when it's dead
If I should n't Be Alive
If the foolish call them 'flowers,'
Immortal is an ample word
It is an honorable thought,
A precious, mouldering pleasure 't is
In lands I never saw, they say,
I dreaded that first robin so,
A bird came down the walk:
I CANNOT live with you,
These are the days when birds come back,
From us she wandered now a year,
Is bliss, then, such abyss
It can't be summer, -- that got through;
It was not death, for I stood up,
It was too late for man,
It'S All I Have To Bring To-Day,
If tolling bell I ask the cause.
Lay this laurel on the one
Let down the bars, O Death!
It's such a little thing to weep,
Life, and Death, and Giants
Like mighty footlights burned the red
I envy seas whereon he rides,
Look back on time with kindly eyes,
To lose one's faith surpasses
I had a daily bliss
I lost a world the other day.
I'm ceded, I've stopped being theirs;
My worthiness is all my doubt,
Love is anterior to life,
Split the lark and you'll find the music,
We like March, his shoes are purple,
Pink, small, and punctual,
Me! Come! My dazzled face
Musicians wrestle everywhere:
Death sets a thing significant
Mine by the right of the white election!
Morning is the place for dew,
Morns like these we parted;
Nature, the gentlest mother,
My country need not change her gown,
Farther in summer than the birds,
My nosegays are for captives;
Pigmy seraphs gone astray,
Nature rarer uses yellow
The springtime's pallid landscape
Not any higher stands the grave
Not with a club the heart is broken,
Besides the autumn poets sing,
I live with him, I see his face;
Arcturus is his other name, --
On the bleakness of my lot
Will there really be a morning?
My life closed twice before its close;
It might be easier
God permits industrious angels
Pompless no life can pass away;
Poor little heart!
Portraits are to daily faces
Did the harebell loose her girdle
You cannot put a fire out;
Prayer is the little implement
Wait till the majesty of Death
Bring me the sunset in a cup,
That I did always love,
A something in a summer's day,
There is a flower that bees prefer,
'T is little I could care for pearls
I like a look of agony,
The clouds their backs together laid,
Remembrance has a rear and front, --
Remorse is memory awake,
There came a day at summer's full
Taken from men this morning,
At last to be identified!
'T was a long parting, but the time
The reticent volcano keeps
'T was just this time last year I died.
I years had been from home,
Soul, wilt thou toss again?
'T is so much joy! 'T is so much joy!
One blessing had I, than the rest
From all the jails the boys and girls
Of tribulation these are they
The skies can't keep their secret!
Exultation is the going
She sweeps with many-colored brooms,
She went as quiet as the dew
It tossed and tossed, --
Before I got my eye put out,
How happy is the little stone
Sleep is supposed to be,
A long, long sleep, a famous sleep
So proud she was to die
Some, too fragile for winter winds,
Summer for thee grant I may be
It sounded as if the streets were running,
[Published in "A Masque of Poets" at the request of "H.H.," the author's fellow-townswoman and friend.]
A drop fell on the apple tree,
Some rainbow coming from the fair!
The gentian weaves her fringes,
A sloop of amber slips away
Where ships of purple gently toss
Superfluous were the sun
Superiority to fate
Surgeons must be very careful
Doubt me, my dim companion!
Elysium is as far as to
Sweet hours have perished here;
'T WAS later when the summer went
Talk with prudence to a beggar
One day is there of the series
That such have died enables us
You've seen balloons set, haven't you?
The bat is dun with wrinkled wings
They dropped like flakes, they dropped like stars,
Like trains of cars on tracks of plush
No brigadier throughout the year
Before you thought of spring,
The bone that has no marrow;
Read, sweet, how others strove,
The brain is wider than the sky,
The bustle in a house
The butterfiy's assumption-gown,
From cocoon forth a butterfly
Because I could not stop for Death,
How the old mountains drip with sunset,
I gave myself to him,
The daisy follows soft the sun,
The distance that the dead have gone
I took my power in my hand.
The dying need but little, dear, --
The farthest thunder that I heard
Not in this world to see his face
After a hundred years
That short, potential stir
Each life converges to some centre
The grass so little has to do, --
The grave my little cottage is,
I think the hemlock likes to stand
A route of evanescence
While I was fearing it, it came,
Our journey had advanced;
Blazing in gold and quenching in purple,
The last night that she lived,
"GOING to him! Happy letter! Tell him --
I know some lonely houses off the road
I held a jewel in my fingers
I felt a clearing in my mind
The rose did caper on her cheek,
Through the straight pass of suffering
He fumbles at your spirit
She laid her docile crescent down,
The moon is distant from the sea,
The moon was but a chin of gold
The mountain sat upon the plain
The mushroom is the elf of plants,
Pain has an element of blank;
The nearest dream recedes, unrealized.
The only ghost I ever saw
To hear an oriole sing
One of the ones that Midas touched,
My river runs to thee:
The past is such a curious creature,
He preached upon "breadth" till it argued him narrow, --
I like to see it lap the miles,
The rat is the concisest tenant.
Though I get home how late, how late!
The robin is the one
This is the land the sunset washes,
An everywhere of silver,
Some things that fly there be, --
The body grows outside, --
The show is not the show,
"Whose are the little beds," I asked,
A narrow fellow in the grass
It sifts from leaden sieves,
The soul should always stand ajar,
The soul unto itself
It struck me every day
A spider sewed at night
'T is whiter than an Indian pipe,
The stimulus, beyond the grave
There came a wind like a bugle;
The sun just touched the morning;
I can wade grief,
The thought beneath so slight a film
She slept beneath a tree
A lady red upon the hill
The way I read a letter's this:
Dare you see a soul at the white heat?
She rose to his requirement, dropped
It's like the light, --
Of all the sounds despatched abroad,
The wind tapped like a tired man,
His bill an auger is,
Their height in heaven comforts not,
There is a shame of nobleness
There's been a death in the opposite house
They say that 'time assuages,' --
They won't frown always, -- some sweet day
We thirst at first, -- 't is Nature's act;
This merit hath the worst, --
This was in the white of the year,
This world is not conclusion;
Three weeks passed since I had seen her, --
I should not dare to leave my friend,
Mine enemy is growing old, --
To hang our head ostensibly,
To help our bleaker parts
To know just how he suffered would be dear;
To learn the transport by the pain,
To lose thee, sweeter than to gain
To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee, --
Dear March, come in!
To my quick ear the leaves conferred;
To venerate the simple days
Delayed till she had ceased to know,
I should have been too glad, I see,
As if some little Arctic flower,
Triumph may be of several kinds.
Who never lost, are unprepared
How many times these low feet staggered,
Bereaved of all, I went abroad,
Two butterflies went out at noon
It makes no difference abroad,
Undue significance a starving man attaches
'T was such a little, little boat
Unto my books so good to turn
'T is sunrise, little maid, hast thou
She died, -- this was the way she died;
Finite to fail, but infinite to venture.
Victory comes late,
Great streets of silence led away
I sing to use the waiting,
Water is taught by thirst;
We cover thee, sweet face.
We learn in the retreating
We never know we go, -- when we are going
We outgrow love like other things
We play at paste,
A solemn thing it was, I said,
What if I say I shall not wait?
What inn is this
What soft, cherubic creatures
When I hoped I feared,
Where every bird is bold to go,
Who has not found the heaven below
My friend must be a bird,
The murmur of a bee
Wild nights! Wild nights!
I hide myself within my flower,
When roses cease to bloom, dear,
If recollecting were forgetting,
South winds jostle them,