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Death as a Theme in Dickinson's Poems - Essay Example

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Name: Instructor: Course: Date: Death as a theme in Dickinson’s poems Death is a strong phenomenon that is never understood, prepared for or accepted. We merely fit it into our lives. Emily Dickinson explored the theme of death in more than one of her poems…
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Death as a Theme in Dickinsons Poems
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Download file to see previous pages In ‘A long-long sleep’ Dickson indicates that there is no revival from death. Unlike sleep where one has the probability of waking up, death has no dawn. There is no movement of the body. One, just like stone, is stiff. Eye lids do not move, and limbs are immobilized. This tells us that death is part of life and when it comes we have to accept it. We should pay our respects and move on. We will have our chance with death, and. (A long-long sleep) (Wegelin 56). Death does not only affect the dead. Those left to bury the dead also have their fair share of sorrow. Emily in her poem, ‘I cannot live without you’, she shows deep grief of a spouse left too soon. The mourner says’ I could not die with you for one must wait to shut the others’ grave down’. This shows that in as much as we would want to die with the dead just to avoid the pain; someone must be left behind to take care of the dead. The poet likens the departed’s remains in the porcelain to a fragile cup. A cup that can easily be broken and although it is replaceable, the old cup’s place can never be taken by the new one. This shows pain of loss by the widowed spouse. The memories of the dead haunt us and break our hearts. We hold on to things they treasured. Memories are what connect the dead from the living. Only those left behind grief and cry. The dead are at peace. They sleep the centuries away. This is illustrated in ‘Death sets a thing’. ‘Now when I read, I read not, for interrupting tears obliterate the etching too costly for repairs.’(I cannot live without you and Death sets a thing) (Wegelin 87). In ‘Her last summer’ Emily depicts death as highly unpredictable. No one is ever ready for it. In the poem, ‘Her final summer was it, and yet we guessed it not’ shows that they did not see death coming. The lady was industrious going about her life when death struck. The people around her are shocked as her busy life is easily shut down by death. ‘The busy darling lay, so busy was she, Finishing’. This showed that death does not have boundaries. When it strikes, it cannot be avoided. Once dead, one has one more duty, to decompose. (Her final summer) (Dickinson 43). In such death as above, the lesson learnt is that we have to value our lives and that of those we love. This is because when we or they are gone, there is no return. It is a long sleep. Another type of death is also explained. When one gives up a part of their lives such as an item or a hobby they adored, that is death. The rehabilitation from undesirable behaviour is also death. This is the rebirth into a new being, out with the old and in with the new. In her poem, ‘I died for beauty’, Emily shows that people die for what they stand for. In the conversation between two tomb neighbours, one man who died for truth asks the other what they died for. The response is, they died for beauty. The two, although physically expired exchanged their lives for the things they loved so much, truth and beauty. This is a deep expression of individuality. People are defined by what they hold as sacred in their lives. This can be education, money, politics and in the case of the tomb neighbours, beauty and truth. (I died for beauty) From this poem, the evident lesson is that people have to find their purpose in life. One must be able to know their purpose. Once they know that, they should pursue their dream or purpose because even after death, one will be held accountable for ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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