Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Selected Poems and Letters” as Want to Read:
Selected Poems and Letters
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Selected Poems and Letters

4.24  ·  Rating Details ·  887 Ratings  ·  34 Reviews
Includes both poems and letters of Dickinson, as well as a contemporary description of the poet in Thomas Wentworth Higginson's account of his correspondence with the poet and his visit to her in Amherst.
Library Binding, 0 pages
Published October 1st 1999 by Bt Bound (first published 1959)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Selected Poems and Letters, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Selected Poems and Letters

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Duffy Pratt
Jun 02, 2013 Duffy Pratt rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Bees and calvary.

I wanted to like this more than I did. The poems are short and sharp. The language plain -- understandable on the surface at least, by anyone who speaks English and can think. You don't even need access to a dictionary. And on top of that, she isn't squarely on the university list of "to read" poets (or wasn't when I was at university). In these ways, I have always thought she had a place somewhat akin to, say, Dylan Thomas, or maybe Frost.

And yet, mostly these poems left me fee
Dec 20, 2012 Kristina rated it really liked it
Her poems cut with the honesty of a child and the experience of woman beyond her years.
I wish this edition did not correct her grammar. I think grammar, especially in poetry is just as telling and revealing.
Love the cover on this book--she looks so MEAN. It appears to me she had a sharp little wit that she mercilessly quelled. Possibly this is what the cover artist was thinking of.
Steven Logan
Nov 22, 2016 Steven Logan rated it really liked it
She is a true talent. Fucking amazing stuff.
Sep 06, 2015 ZaRi rated it liked it
Shelves: poem, letter, women
Your riches taught me poverty,
Myself a millionaire
In little wealths, as girls could boast,

Till, broad as Buenos Ayre,
You drifted your dominions
A different Peru,
And I esteemed all poverty
For life's estate, with you.

Of mines, I little know, myself,
But just the names of gems,
The colors of the commonest,
And scarce of diadems
So much that, did I meet the queen
Her glory I should know;
But this must be a different wealth,
To miss it, beggars so.

I'm sure 't is India, all day,
To those who look on you
Oct 06, 2013 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this collection of Emily Dickinson's poetry and letters. I'm rating 4 stars based on my own enjoyment rather than a critical review of her work. I always like reading poetry, but feel like I'm not getting it...enough. Like it's not sinking in deeply enough. Particularly with Dickinson's work, I always find it beautiful, moving, and provocative, but often can't seem to decipher true meaning, let alone note her stylistic prowess and its connotations.

What I enjoyed most about this collect
Jan 27, 2012 Rory rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The letters, plus Thomas Wentworth Higginson's essay about his friendship with E.D., are a million times more interesting than the poems. Also, anybody who wants to read E.D. should get an edition that doesn't "fix" all the capitalization and dashes like this one does which I only got because I'm broke.

"The career of flowers differs from ours only in inaudibleness."

"When I asked her if she never felt any want of employment, not going off the grounds and rarely seeing a visitor, she answered, 'I
Nov 19, 2010 Marilyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dickinson is a poet even when she writes prose. I had a bit of a hard time following some of what she wrote because she is so very sparce, but loved so much of what she said and the way she said it. It was a delifgtful change of pace from other things I've read lately. I was reminded why I love her poetry so much and discovered a poem I really love (perhaps because we are in the season of it) that I had not read before. "The morns are meeker than they were, The nuts are getting brown; The berry' ...more
Oct 03, 2012 Andrea rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
I need to get back to reading more poetry.
I remember loving some of these poems in my youth so I picked up this volume because I thought the letters would furnish some added insight.
Not to be; many of the letters are just as cryptic and enigmatic as her poems.
So, back to the poems. I've spent some time savouring the ones that are like drops of mind-expanding drugs, and labouring over others that remain impenetrable (at least by my modest brain), and finally, rejecting those that touch too closel
Mar 27, 2011 Tanya rated it liked it
Shelves: poetry-drama
Although clearly very skilled work, it's not entirely my thing. At least, not in a collection like this. It's very ruminative, focusing on issues like death, heaven, immortality, nature, wonder etc. I can see myself loving reading one Dickinson poem, but so many different examinations of the same abstract ideas was a little too much for me. I guess I prefer a little earthiness mixed in. I'd rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints, to quote Billy Joel.
Noel M.
Jan 03, 2009 Noel M. rated it did not like it
I've attempted to read Dickinson multiple times but it's always painful. I continually think of teenage whining angst while reading and basically don't want to hear it. Yeah, yeah, life is terrible and you want to die, we've heard it before. Dickinson was so introverted she made her own life a hell.
Stevie Edwards
Aug 29, 2013 Stevie Edwards rated it really liked it
Well, it's full of Emily Dickinson's poems, so of course it's good. My main complaints are that it doesn't include the original versions of the poems (with Dickinson's dashes and irregular capitalization) and that it includes many of her less known and less developed short little poems while leaving out some of the more critically examined ones, for example "My Life had stood – a Loaded Gun."
Jean Marie Angelo
Feb 16, 2013 Jean Marie Angelo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
She was an agoraphobic who lived much of life in a single room in a house in Amherst. Yet, she had vision of life that was wide and wise. She was wordly. Her poems still speak to us. I read this collection after a director suggested that I play Emily in the play, The Belle of Amherst. Just brilliant.
Feb 23, 2012 Linda rated it it was amazing
Knowing how much I love Emily Dickinson's poems, a good friend gave this to my for my birthday this year. What a joy to reconnect with Ms. Dickinson! The book is now on my bedside table, and I read one or two of these gems before turning out the light. I wish I could have met this shy recluse with her wry way of looking at things.
Jul 10, 2016 Tessa rated it did not like it
Shelves: poetry
I love Emily, but the editor of this collection seriously pissed me off by reformatting her poems to exclude her signature em dashes and capitalization. He also left off lines from several of the poems. NOT representative of her work AT ALL.
Jan 02, 2013 Fed rated it really liked it
Good selection of poems. Her choice of adjectives is impressive and even though her words are of the past, they are very alive today. Example: "I never hear the word escape".

And, as far as escapes go, I agree with her in her that "there is no frigate like a book".

Aug 21, 2008 Colin rated it did not like it
The poems are brilliant, but this idiot editor went a little nuts by eliminating the dashes and capitalization. DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK. BUY ALMOST ANY OTHER DICKINSON COLLECTION.
Apr 06, 2013 Anna rated it really liked it
Shelves: classics, own
If I ever get the chance to buy this, I will. Every poem was worth reading, and they were so soothing to read.
Feb 08, 2013 Sandra rated it it was amazing
I have ALWAYS Loved Emily Dickinson - ever since I "met" her in high school. her works have spoken volumes to me over the years!
Mar 16, 2008 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The older I get, the better I like Emily Dickenson. I seriously disliked her poetry when I was first introduced to it.
Linda Labin
Linda Labin rated it it was amazing
Nov 15, 2012
Taryn rated it liked it
Aug 03, 2010
Mike rated it it was amazing
Sep 20, 2012
Rosemary rated it it was amazing
Mar 24, 2011
Arlene Adams-gertsch
Arlene Adams-gertsch rated it really liked it
Jan 17, 2013
Scott Howard
Scott Howard rated it liked it
Aug 24, 2012
Snailes rated it really liked it
Jan 14, 2012
Hazel Phillips
Hazel Phillips rated it it was amazing
Sep 09, 2015
Rachel Nichols
Rachel Nichols rated it it was amazing
Jul 08, 2012
Cathy rated it liked it
Nov 30, 2012
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Immortal Poems of the English Language
  • Selected Poems
  • Edna St. Vincent Millay: Poems (Everyman's Library Pocket Poets)
  • Sonnets from the Portuguese and Other Poems
  • A Defence of Poetry
  • Selected Poems, 1908-1969
  • Ararat
  • Selected Poems and Two Plays
  • Ariel's Gift: Ted Hughes, Sylvia Plath, and the Story of Birthday Letters
  • Orwell
  • The Brontës: A Life in Letters
  •  Palm Sunday/Welcome to the Monkeyhouse
  • Fêtes galantes / Romances sans paroles / Poèmes saturniens
  • The Poems of Doctor Zhivago
  • Cries of the Spirit: More Than 300 Poems in Celebration of Women's Spirituality
  • The Top 500 Poems
  • The Spirit Level
  • Collected Poems, 1937-1971
Emily Dickinson was an American poet who, despite the fact that less than a dozen of her nearly eighteen hundred poems were published during her lifetime, is widely considered one of the most original and influential poets of the 19th century.

Dickinson was born to a successful family with strong community ties, she lived a mostly introverted and reclusive life. After she studied at the Amherst Aca
More about Emily Dickinson...

Share This Book