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Emily Dickinson
1830 - 1886



P o e m s  undated

[no autograph copy is known]

A Word made Flesh is seldom
And tremblingly partook
Nor then perhaps reported
But have I not mistook
Each one of us has tasted
with ecstasies of stealth
The very food debated
To our specific strength -

A Word that breathes distinctly
Has not the power to die
Cohesive as the Spirit
It may expire if He -
"Made Flesh and dwelt among us"
Could condescension be
Like this consent of Language
This loved Philology.

[no autograph copy is known]

Beauty crowds me till I die
Beauty mercy have on me
But if I expire to-day
Let it be in sight of thee -

[no autograph copy is known]

Lightly stepped a yellow star
To it's lofty place
Loosed the Moon her silver hat
From her lustral Face
All of Evening softly lit
As an Astral Hall
Father I observed to Heaven
You are punctual -

[no autograph copy is known]

Speech is one symptom of Affection
And Silence one -
The perfectest communication
Is heard of none

Exists and it's indorsement
Is had within -
Behold said the Apostle
Yet had not seen!

[no autograph copy is known]

By a departing light
We see acuter, quite,
Than by a wick that stays.
There's something in the flight
That clarifies the sight
And decks the rays

[no autograph copy is known]

Had I known that the first was the last
I should have kept it longer.
Had I known that the last is the first
I should have drunk it stronger.
Cup, it was your fault,
Lip was not the liar.
No, lip it was yours,
Bliss was most to blame.

[no autograph copy is known]

If all the griefs I am to have
Would only come today,
I am so happy I believe
They'd laugh and run away.

If all the joys I am to have
Would only come today,
They could not be so big as this
That happens to me now.

[no autograph copy is known]

Love can do all but raise the Dead
I doubt if even that
From such a giant were withheld
Were flesh equivalent

But love is tired and must sleep,
And hungry and must graze
And so abets the shining Fleet
Till it is out of gaze.

[no autograph copy is known]

My life closed twice before its close;
It yet remains to see
If Immortality unveil
A third event to me,

So huge, so hopeless to conceive
As these that twice befell.
Parting is all we know of heaven,
And all we need of hell.

[no autograph copy is known]

Fame is a bee.
      It has a song -
It has a sting -
      Ah, too, it has a wing.

[no autograph copy is known]

The earth has many keys,
      Where melody is not
Is the unknown peninsula.
Beauty is nature's fact.

But witness for her land,
And witness for her sea,
The cricket is her utmost
      Of elegy to me.
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