Emily Dickinson Quotes

Quotes tagged as "emily-dickinson" Showing 1-30 of 65
William Luce
“Oh phosphorescence. Now there’s a word to lift your hat to... To find that phosphorescence, that light within — is the genius behind poetry.”
William Luce, The Belle of Amherst

Emily Dickinson
“She died--this was the way she died;
And when her breath was done,
Took up her simple wardrobe
And started for the sun.
Her little figure at the gate
The angels must have spied,
Since I could never find her
Upon the mortal side.”
Emily Dickinson, Selected Poems

Emily Dickinson
“I felt a Funeral, in my Brain,
And Mourners to and fro
Kept treading – treading – till it seemed
That Sense was breaking through –

And when they all were seated,
A Service, like a Drum –
Kept beating – beating – till I thought
My Mind was going numb –

And then I heard them lift a Box
And creak across my Soul
With those same Boots of Lead, again,
Then Space – began to toll,

As all the Heavens were a Bell,
And Being, but an Ear,
And I, and Silence, some strange Race
Wrecked, solitary, here –

And then a Plank in Reason, broke,
And I dropped down, and down –
And hit a World, at every plunge,
And Finished knowing – then –”
Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson

Nathan Reese Maher
“All is as if the world did cease to exist. The city's monuments go unseen, its past unheard, and its culture slowly fading in the dismal sea.”
Nathan Reese Maher

Emily Dickinson
“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 labour, 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.”
Emily Dickinson

Emily Dickinson
“open me carefully”
Emily Dickinson, Selected Letters

Matt Haig
“The longer you live, the harder it becomes. To grab them. Each little moment as it arrives. To be living in something other than the past or the future. To be actually here.
Forever, Emily Dickinson said, is composed of nows. But how do you inhabit the now you are in? How do you stop the ghosts of all the other nows from getting in? How, in short, do you live?”
Matt Haig, How to Stop Time

Woody Allen
“How wrong Emily Dickinson was! Hope is not "the thing with feathers." The thing with feathers has turned out to be my nephew. I must take him to a specialist in Zurich.”
Woody Allen, Without Feathers

Emily Dickinson
“Le monde est oval. On apprend l’eau par la soif, et la terre par le voyage en mer; la passion par les affres, et la paix par les récits de guerre; l’amour par la mort, et les oiseaux par l’hiver.”
Emily Dickinson

Suzanne Supplee
“Emily Dickinson , in my opinion, is the perfect (although admittedly slightly cliche) poet for lonely fat girls.”
Suzanne Supplee, Artichoke's Heart

Jerome Charyn
“Why else do we write and write except to move our readers?”
Jerome Charyn, The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson

Emily Dickinson
“I miss you, mourn for you, and walk the streets alone- often at night, beside, I fall asleep in tears, for your dear face, yet not one word comes back to me. If it is finished, tell me, and I will raise the lid to my box of Phantoms, and lay one more love in; but if it lives and beats still, still lives and beats for me, then say so, and I will strike the strings to one more strain of happiness before I die.”
Emily Dickinson, Open Me Carefully: Emily Dickinson's Intimate Letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson

Thomas Wentworth Higginson
“After all, when a thought takes one's breath away, a lesson on grammar seems an impertinence.”
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Poems By Emily Dickinson Third Series

Emily Dickinson
“And somebody has lost the face
That made existence home!”
Emily Dickinson, Dickinson: Poems

Billy Collins
“Taking Off Emily Dickinson’s Clothes"

First, her tippet made of tulle,
easily lifted off her shoulders and laid
on the back of a wooden chair.

And her bonnet,
the bow undone with a light forward pull.

Then the long white dress, a more
complicated matter with mother-of-pearl
buttons down the back,
so tiny and numerous that it takes forever
before my hands can part the fabric,
like a swimmer’s dividing water,
and slip inside.

You will want to know
that she was standing
by an open window in an upstairs bedroom,
motionless, a little wide-eyed,
looking out at the orchard below,
the white dress puddled at her feet
on the wide-board, hardwood floor.

The complexity of women’s undergarments
in nineteenth-century America
is not to be waved off,
and I proceeded like a polar explorer
through clips, clasps, and moorings,
catches, straps, and whalebone stays,
sailing toward the iceberg of her nakedness.

Later, I wrote in a notebook
it was like riding a swan into the night,
but, of course, I cannot tell you everything—
the way she closed her eyes to the orchard,
how her hair tumbled free of its pins,
how there were sudden dashes
whenever we spoke.

What I can tell you is
it was terribly quiet in Amherst
that Sabbath afternoon,
nothing but a carriage passing the house,
a fly buzzing in a windowpane.

So I could plainly hear her inhale
when I undid the very top
hook-and-eye fastener of her corset

and I could hear her sigh when finally it was unloosed,
the way some readers sigh when they realize
that Hope has feathers,
that Reason is a plank,
that Life is a loaded gun
that looks right at you with a yellow eye.”
Billy Collins, Taking Off Emily Dickinson's Clothes

Emily Dickinson
“Sweet hour, blessed hour, to carry me to you, and to bring you back to me, long enough to snatch one kiss, and whisper goodbye again.”
Emily Dickinson, Open Me Carefully: Emily Dickinson's Intimate Letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson

Emily Dickinson
“There are depths in every Consciousness, from which we cannot rescue ourselves - to which none can go with us.”
Emily Dickinson

Michael Finkel
“He marveled at the poetry of Emily Dickinson, sensing her kindred spirit. For the last seventeen years of her life, Dickinson rarely left her home in Massachusetts and spoke to visitors only through a partially closed door. "Saying nothing, " she wrote, "sometimes says the most.”
Michael Finkel, The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit

Emily Dickinson
“Oh Susie, I often think that I will try to tell you how very dear you are, and how I'm watching for you, but the words won't come, though the tears will, and I sit down disappointed. Yet, darling, you know it all-- then why do I seek to tell you? I do not know. In thinking of those I love, my reason is all gone from me, and I do fear sometimes that I must make a hospital for the hopelessly insane, and chain myself up there so I won't injure you.”
Emily Dickinson, Open Me Carefully: Emily Dickinson's Intimate Letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson

Roshani Chokshi
“You know that book of poems I’m always carrying around? [...] In one of her poems, she calls hope the ‘thing with feathers,’ and I always think about that…. Maybe when we hope for something, the hope flies off to find whatever it is we’re thinking about…and then it brings it back to us. And when there’s nothing else we can do, at least we can hope.”
Roshani Chokshi, Aru Shah and the City of Gold

Emily Dickinson
“The Soul selects her own Society — Then — shuts the Door — To her divine Majority — Present no more —”
Emily Dickinson

Jane Yolen
“I tell the truth,' she said. 'But I tell it slant.”
Jane Yolen, The Emerald Circus

“Tell the truth, but tell it slant...' is Emily Dickinson's advice....

I've been struck by how often slant is confused with bias - as though having a point of view, a set of assumptions, or a firmly held opinion is in itself unscrupulous or unfair. And as though neutrality is the mark of fairness or truth.”
Marilyn Chandler McEntyre, Caring for Words in a Culture of Lies

Dominique Fortier
“Emily écrit sur le monde qu'elle habite, tout en sachant qu'il serait plus beau si personne ne l'habitait.”
Dominique Fortier, Les villes de papier

Emily Dickinson
“Each life converges to some centre expressed or still . . .”
Emily Dickinson

Maria Popova
“A quarter millennium later, Emily Dickinson would write in a poem the central metaphor of which draws on Kepler’s legacy:

Each that we lose takes part of us;
A crescent still abides,
Which like the moon, some turbid night,
Is summoned by the tides.”
Maria Popova, Figuring

Emily Dickinson
“When
Continents
expire
The Giants
they discarded —
are
Promoted
to endure —”
Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson

Dominique Fortier
“All she needs is to lay down a few sentences, sometimes just a few words, on paper to feel soothed, for a moment delivered from this nameless, pointless urgency that consumes her. Even saved. What is the catastrophe from which she tries to rip these lines? Oblivion, death, the inferno of the world? She couldn't say.”
Dominique Fortier, Les villes de papier

“the absence of activity in her life is matched by the phenomenal activity of her intellect”
Cynthia Griffin Wolff

Emily Dickinson
“Awake ye muses nine, sing me a strain divine,
Unwind the solemn twine, and tie my Valentine!

Oh the Earth was made for lovers, for damsel, and hopeless swain,
For sighing, and gentle whispering, and unity made of twain.
All things do go a courting, in earth, or sea, or air,
God hath made nothing single but thee in His world so fair!
The bride, and then the bridegroom, the two, and then the one,
Adam, and Eve, his consort, the moon, and then the sun;
The life doth prove the precept, who obey shall happy be,
Who will not serve the sovereign, be hanged on fatal tree.
The high do seek the lowly, the great do seek the small,
None cannot find who seeketh, on this terrestrial ball;
The bee doth court the flower, the flower his suit receives,
And they make merry wedding, whose guests are hundred leaves;
The wind doth woo the branches, the branches they are won,
And the father fond demandeth the maiden for his son.
The storm doth walk the seashore humming a mournful tune,
The wave with eye so pensive, looketh to see the moon,
Their spirits meet together, they make their solemn vows,
No more he singeth mournful, her sadness she doth lose.
The worm doth woo the mortal, death claims a living bride,
Night unto day is married, morn unto eventide;
Earth is a merry damsel, and heaven a knight so true,
And Earth is quite coquettish, and beseemeth in vain to sue.
Now to the application, to the reading of the roll,
To bringing thee to justice, and marshalling thy soul:
Thou art a human solo, a being cold, and lone,
Wilt have no kind companion, thou reap'st what thou hast sown.
Hast never silent hours, and minutes all too long,
And a deal of sad reflection, and wailing instead of song?
There's Sarah, and Eliza, and Emeline so fair,
And Harriet, and Susan, and she with curling hair!
Thine eyes are sadly blinded, but yet thou mayest see
Six true, and comely maidens sitting upon the tree;
Approach that tree with caution, then up it boldly climb,
And seize the one thou lovest, nor care for space, or time!
Then bear her to the greenwood, and build for her a bower,
And give her what she asketh, jewel, or bird, or flower —
And bring the fife, and trumpet, and beat upon the drum —
And bid the world Goodmorrow, and go to glory home!”
Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems from Emily Dickinson:

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