11 December 2007

After great pain, a formal feeling comes

Sally and I attended the Emily Dickinson lecture at the Folger last night (and rounded out our east coast liberal experience by having wine and cheese after) and the hand-out, on nice 65-pound stock, was this.

After great pain, a formal feeling comes--
The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Tombs--
The stiff Heart questions was it He, that bore,
And Yesterday, or Centuries before?
The Feet, mechanical, go round--
Of Ground, or Air, or Ought--
A Wooden way
Regardless grown,
A Quartz contentment, like a stone--
This is the Hour of Lead--
Remembered, if outlived,
As Freezing persons recollect the Snow--

First--Chill--then Stupor--then the letting go--

Emily Dickinson (1862)


dgorsline said...

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Anonymous said...

Me again.