Emily Dickinson

1830-1886


Contents

We outgrow love like other things
Who has not found the Heaven below
I'm nobody! Who are you?
Because I could not stop for Death
After great pain
Pain has an element of blank
Poem 1150


We outgrow love like other things

We outgrow love like other things
And put it in the drawer,
Till it an antique fashion shows
Like costumes grandsires wore.


Who has not found the heaven below

Who has not found the heaven below
Will fail of it above.
God's residence is next to mine,
His furniture is love.


I'm nobody! Who are you?

I'm nobody! Who are you?
Are you nobody, too?
Then there is a pair of us - don't tell!
They'd banish us, you know.

How dreary to be somebody.
How public, like a frog.
To tell your name the livelong day
To an admiring bog!


Because I could not stop for Death

Because I could not stop for Death,
He kindly stopped for me;
The carriage held but just ourselves
And Immortality.

We slowly drove, he knew no haste,
And I had put away
My labor, and my leisure too,
For his civility.

We passed the school where children played,
Their lessons scarcely done;
We passed the fields of gazing grain,
We passed the setting sun.

We paused before a house that seemed
A swelling of the ground;
The roof was scarcely visible,
The cornice but a mound.

Since then 'tis centuries; but each
Feels shorter than the day
I first surmised the horses' heads
Were toward eternity.


After great pain

After great pain, a formal feeling comes
The nerves sit ceremonious, like tombs
The stiff heart questions was it he, that bore,
And yesterday, or centuries before?

The feet, mechanical, go round
Of ground, or air, or ought
A wooden way
Regardless grown,
A quartz contentment, like a stone.

This is the hour of lead
Remembered, if outlived,
As freezing persons recollect the snow.
First chill - then stupor - then the letting go.


Pain has an element of blank

Pain has an element of blank;
It cannot recollect
When it began, or if there were
A day when it was not.

It has no future but itself,
Its infinite realms contain
Its past, enlightened to perceive
New periods of pain.


Poem 1150

How many schemes may die
In one short Afternoon
Entirely unknown
To those they most concern -
The man that was not lost
Because by accident
He varied by a Ribbon's width
From his accustomed route -
The Love that would not try
Because beside the Door
It must be competitions
Some unsuspecting Horse was tied
Surveying his Despair.

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