Meredith's Reviews > Final Harvest

Final Harvest by Emily Dickinson
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Jun 06, 09

bookshelves: poetry
Read in April, 2002

I am ashamed to admit that I had dismissed Emily Dickinson as some kind of cutesy, greeting card, nature poet prior college when I -- a non-honors student -- managed to sneak into an honors discussion course about her poetry where I quickly gained a new respect for her.

This selection of Emily Dickinson's poems is wonderful except for one omission: the poem "In Winter in my Room," which I handwrote in the back of my copy.

In Winter in my Room
I came upon a Worm --
Pink, lank and warm --
But as he was a worm
And worms presume
Not quite with him at home --
Secured him by a string
To something neighboring
And went along.

A Trifle afterward
A thing occurred
I'd not believe it if I heard
But state with creeping blood --
A snake with mottles rare
Surveyed my chamber floor
In feature as the worm before
But ringed with power --

The very string with which
I tied him -- too
When he was mean and new
That string was there --

I shrank -- "How fair you are"!
Propitiation's claw --
"Afraid," he hissed
"Of me"?
"No cordiality" --
He fathomed me --
Then to a Rhythm Slim
Secreted in his Form
As Patterns swim
Projected him.

That time I flew
Both eyes his way
Lest he pursue
Nor ever ceased to run
Till in a distant Town
Towns on from mine
I set me down
This was a dream.
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