The secret world of emily dickinson

emily dickinson death

Emily did not. To Mabel Todd, with her discerning taste, that shut door, and the elect intelligence behind it, offered an irresistible challenge. But a more threatening challenge, deeper below the surface, fired the volcanoes and earthquakes in her poems — an event, as she put it, that "Struck — my ticking — through —".

At its height in the s, the feud turned into a conflict over the sale of the Dickinson papers. Yet Austin must have been aware that in his own home, his estranged wife treasured a separate collection — poems Emily had given her over the years.

Allowing for the poet's resolve to tell it "slant", through metaphor, are we not looking at epilepsy? A schoolmate remembered that Emily dropped crockery. At 17, as a student at Mount Holyoke in the same year that the women's movement took a stand at Seneca Fallsshe refused to bend to the founder of her college, the formidable Mary Lyon.

To hear the tapes is to understand their impact on a biographer.

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Poems had sold 11, copies in its first year. A recurring fact during the first years of the affair is crucial to the poet's position. There are many forms of epilepsy, and the mild petit mal does not involve convulsions. Story continues below advertisement. Both camps proceeded to wrap the poet in legends that stress her pathos: where Dickinson legend built up a bereft Emily in a dimity apron turning away the one and only man she loved, Todd legend built up a pitiful Emily "hurt" by her "cruel" sister-in-law, Susan Dickinson. An initiation in infinitude was the gift Dickinson offered to the few she admitted to intimacy. A schoolmate remembered that Emily dropped crockery. Mabel Todd's persuasive grace in presenting her point of view was reinforced by the educated rigour of her daughter's voice on tape as she took Sewall through the legal history of the feud, bristling with facts and dates. Sent home to recover from croup, Emily never returns to the school and, in fact, rarely leaves home again until her death nearly 40 years later. Or that Etherial Gain — One earns by measuring the Grave — Then — measuring the Sun — Sickness is always there, shielded by cover stories: in youth, a cough is mentioned; in her mids, trouble with her eyes.

Only no one can know what Austin said: the image of execution was transmitted by a mistress determined to oust his wife, and not only in the usual manner, but in various ways to obliterate Sue's centrality in the poet's life.

Even still, Emily finds herself often envious of her less fortunate rival.

emily dickinson biography
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The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson