Death is an unknown, no one has ever died and come back to tell the tale, instead people have to imagine and come up with what they think it will be like. The poets, Emily Dickinson and William Cullen Bryant, both had very different perspectives when it came to writing about death. In Bryant’s “Thanatopsis”, the speaker emphasizes that one joins nature and should not be afraid because they will be with everyone else as equals when they die. This is different from Dickinson’s poem, “Because I could not stop for Death”, where the speaker takes a ride in a carriage with death for eternity. Whether or not these authors believed that their poems were actual representations of what happens when one dies, the poems both describe unique ideas of what
But at the thought of death, a poem by Emily Dickinson comes to mind, and poses the thought, what if death isn't quite as ominous and foreboding as we believe it to be. Furthermore the poet, Emily Dickinson uses gentle language to describe death in Because I Could Not Stop For Death, an instance being “The Carriage held but just Ourselves”. This lighthearted language suggests a kinder idea of Death, one that drives a carriage instead of a hearse. Employing death as the commentator for this book makes sense, because death had its hands full during the holocaust, claiming over 11 million lives. And seeing this through the eyes of something who has seen it to the full extent provides an enlightening perspective.
Throughout the poem, Dickinson describes Death as a male that keeps coming for her while she is trying to escape him. In the first two lines, she uses personification, giving Death human characteristics. “Because I could not stop for death, He kindly stopped for me,” emphasizing death as a male and how he has stopped for her at this point. In lines 9-12, Dickinson uses imagery to create a picture for the reader to emphasize what she and Death are witnessing as they are passing through the area. Imagery is used throughout the poem to illustrate what she is seeing such as children at recess and passing the Fields of Gazing Grain and watching the Sun Set as they take a walk.
Maria Marginean Thesis: Although Emily Dickinson never Denies the Existence of God, she criticizes the Suffering “He” causes and the negative effects “He” has on the Individual’s sense of self regarding Death and the Afterlife. (Note: She emphasizes that the individual is powerful perhaps more so than the perceived notion of a “God”, and that he individual should focus on enjoying their life at the moment rather than stressing about the afterlife. It seems as though she doesn’t want to die, go to Heaven.)
In the first stanza, the speaker establishes the relationship between the speaker and Death. The speaker personifies Death as being a kind fellow who is picking up the speaker for a carriage ride. Death “kindly stopped” (Dickinson line 2) for her which suggests that the
The first stanza of this particular Dickinson poem helps to set the on going theme for the rest of the poem. The theme of course for this particular poem is about the sea and early morning walk that Dickinson had with her dog. The opening stanza of the poem reads, “I started Early- Took my Dog -/And visited the Sea -/The Mermaids in the Basement / Came out to look at me” (I. 1-4). From this passage the audience can presume that Dickinson has taken her pet dog for a walk on the beach in the early morning hours, and that on the walk she may have encountered beautiful sea creatures that looked up at her.
Emily Dickinson’s Poem 365 begins the first stanza with acknowledging that a “He” exists in silence and hiding. This He can be a possible perception God, as Dickinson him as being silent and in hiding, but still existing. The poem mentions that He has a rare life, a possible inference that God is the only thing in existence of that sort of being. All of these descriptions of the He in the first stanza infer that God is the thing she is contemplating here.
It is talking about how she does not mind that Death has interrupted her tasks because of how polite Death was. She says, “We slowly drove – He knew no haste” (5). This symbolizes the speaker’s death as being long and slow, not quick. This could mean that she was suffering from a “long illness, or slowly dying of old age” (Bouson 110). The poem does not say for sure, but the reader can make educated guesses with what evidence is provided.
“Because I could not stop for death” is one of the prolific Emily Dickinson’s most discussed poems. It offers a morbid proclivity displayed in many, if not most, of her work; the difference here being that, though those works discussed death and dying to great extents, none dealt with the idea of the journey of the soul in such an explicit way. Dickinson lived a notoriously secluded life , though this was not forced upon her, nor a result of personal trauma. (Gabler-Hoover and Sattlemeyer, 884) This lack of social contact could enhance an innate fascination with mortality, especially one’s own.
However, the reason this scene is happening is because we have such a fear of death that most of us refuse to stop for it. However, as the courteous gentleman that death is kindly stops for the speaker in the poem to show that death isn’t so bad. Another example is “And I had put away My labor and my leisure too, For His Civility” (569).
Emily Dickinson had multiple views on death. At first she was in love with the peaceful, gentle side of death, but that all changed when she lost her everything, her parents to death. The significance is that Romanticism is a diverse thing and it can be shaped a formed to the writers likings, but it will only have an effect if the reader interprets the poem in the same
In the opening stanza the speaker states being too busy for death. Thus, death “kindly” takes the time to stop for her since she has no time to do it for herself. Death stops to pick up the speaker and take her on a ride in his horse-drawn carriage in the form of a suitor along with “immorality” being their chaperon. This “civility” that Death exhibits leads the speaker on giving up what made her busy as Dickinson states “And I had put away / My labor and my leisure too (6-7).
In “Because I Could Not Stop for Death,” Dickinson uses dashes at the end of lines to signal rests, exemplified as how she interposes dashes throughout the first stanza, “because I could not stop for death - he kindly stopped for me - the carriage
In “Because I Could Not Stop For Death”, Emily Dickinson uses imagery and symbols to establish the cycle of life and uses examples to establish the inevitability of death. This poem describes the speaker’s journey to the afterlife with death. Dickinson uses distinct images, such as a sunset, the horses’ heads, and the carriage ride to establish the cycle of life after death. Dickinson artfully uses symbols such as a child, a field of grain, and a sunset to establish the cycle of life and its different stages. Dickinson utilizes the example of the busyness of the speaker and the death of the sun to establish the inevitability of death.
Emily Dickinson used a technique in which she gradually lead the reader to the meanings in the end of each verse. But each line in this poem plays an important role to metaphorically complete the messages as well as to literally complete the poem. All in all, the verses, are very different from each other. Paradoxically however, they are very similar and they contain the same message. The destructiveness of human