A Certain Slant of Light

POL

There’s a certain slant of light,
On winter afternoons,
That oppresses, like the weight
Of cathedral tunes.

Heavenly hurt it gives us;
We can find no scar,
But internal difference
Where the meanings are.

None may teach it anything,
’T is the seal, despair —
An imperial affliction
Sent us of the air.

When it comes, the landscape listens,
Shadows hold their breath;
When it goes, ’t is like the distance
On the look of death.

First print Nature XXXI, 31
Johnson 258 | Franklin 320

Text compared with the fascicle and prepared for publication by Teresa Pelka, available under any of the following licenses: Creative Commons License 4.0, BY-SA 3.0, and License 2.5.

Dash alone to expand on thought, cf. Notes, for The Outlet.
Poems, first print by Higginson and Todd, page;
Google Drive, manuscript fascicles;
Poems one-by-one print and fascicle comparison,
Resource for Emily Dickinson’s poetry.

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If her skill was taken for supernatural, the world may never have seen her original handwriting. Feel welcome to Poems by Emily Dickinson prepared for print by Teresa Pelka: thematic stanzas, notes on the Greek and Latin inspiration, the correlative with Webster 1828, and the Aristotelian motif, Things perpetual — these are not in time, but in eternity.
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The enclosed piece-by-piece analysis works a criterion to embrace the epsilon, predicate structure, vowel contour, phonemics, person reference in abstract thought, and altogether stylistic coherence. The result supports doubt on fascicle originality. There always is the simple question as well: do we believe Emily Dickinson tried to tell about very exceptional Bees, Ears, or Birds, so peculiar that you write them with capital letters?
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