Emily Dickinson's Hope Is The Thing With Feathers

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In Emily Dickinson’s “Hope” is the Thing with Feathers, the author illustrates the paradoxically powerful and fragile nature of hope through the extended metaphor of a bird. Hope being compared to a bird is the perfect analogy because it shows the true function of hope through times of adversity and hardship. The first stanza of Emily Dickinson’s poem conveys how hope “perches” in the soul, like a bird in a tree surrounded by stormy waters, and sings a relaxing, “wordless tune,” going on forever. Just as a bird’s songs are peaceful to the ears, hope’s songs are peaceful to the soul. Dickinson also displays the metaphor of “hope” as a bird in the last stanza when she comments how hope “never-in Extremity, / asked a crumb-of me.” This parallel of hope as a bird is portrayed through the simple word of “crumb.” Birds can live and thrive off just the smallest of crumbs, but hope takes nothing from a person to live and thrive within the soul. Through this extended metaphor of hope being joint…show more content…
The view of hope being on edge of weakness is a very paradoxical view to the strong and stern perspective of hope as an anchor shown in the second stanza. Both the first and the third stanza display the calm and caring aspect of hope that many people wish to obtain. Dickinson first portrays the relaxing beautiful nature when she claims hope “sings the tune without the words- / And never stops-at all-.” Wordless music is often identified as being relaxing and calming, and hope sings these songs with no end, even in the “storms” of our lives. Later, Dickinson mentions that when the storms do come, hope is always there to “keep so many warm,” even “in the chillest land- / And on the strangest Sea.” On a thematic level, Dickinson conveys that no matter if a person’s struggles are minor or significant, critical or trivial, hope will always acquiesce to calm and collect a scattered

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