December 10, 2012

Emily Dickinson poem on her birthday

Born on this day in 1830, Emily Dickinson would leave a legacy of almost 1,800 poems and many letters. Her grandfather, Samuel Fowler Dickinson, founded Amherst College in Massachusetts. Emily was born in a house in Amherst, called the Homestead. Emily spent much of her adult life in that house.

Considered one of the most important poets in American literature, Dickinson expressed a dark pessimism, which reflected the alienation of many American intellectuals after the Civil War. She was also known for being very private, which only made the public more fascinated with her personal life.

Below is one of her poems, written about nature:

Nature is what we see,
The Hill, the Afternoon—
Squirrel, Eclipse, the Bumble-bee
Nay—Nature is Heaven.

Nature is what we hear,
The Bobolink, the Sea—
Thunder, the Cricket—
Nay—Nature is Harmony.

Nature is what we know
But have no art to say,
So impotent our wisdom is
To Her simplicity.

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