• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Acceptance of death is one of the main themes of Emily Dickinsons poem, Because I could not stop for death Only published in 1886 after her death; it puts the reader in a first person perspective, following her funeral carriage as it is drawn by

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Acceptance of death is one of the main themes of Emily Dickinson's poem, "Because I could not stop for death" Only published in 1886 after her death; it puts the reader in a first person perspective, following her funeral carriage as it is drawn by horses to her burial. Unlike conventional poems where death is a dark bad thing, in "could not stop", Dickinson describes death warmly, personifying it as a civil gentleman; while also using many metaphors and imagery to explore the themes of the poem The first two stanza's of the poem set the slow, dark tone of the poem, which is started with an in media res, "because", giving the reader the sense that they are joining the story part way through and signifying that most of the speakers life is already over. ...read more.

Middle

Dickinson begins by describing the carriage passing a school, where children "strove At Recess - in the Ring" the verb "strove" is used instead of a more expected word such as "play", making the children seem to struggle in their activities; and the noun "Ring" also makes the children seem confined and trapped, and in combination with "strove", makes childhood innocence seem a difficult goal to achieve. The carriage then passes fields of "Gazing Grain" and a "Setting Sun" which are both metaphors for the life's stages, the grain being the middle and the setting sun the end. The adjective "Gazing" gives an eerie feeling to the passage and the impression that the speaker was being watched and judged throughout her life. Dickinson then writes "Or rather - He passed us", referring to the sun. This gives an image of the speaker lying dead, while the world continues to go round, passing her, and making her feel very insignificant in the world. ...read more.

Conclusion

The dirt, "swelling of the ground", coffin lid "roof" and grave stone "cornice" are also mentioned to help suggest the house metaphor to the reader. The next line " 'tis Centuries...Feel shorter than the Day" tells the reader how time flies by now that Dickinson is dead. The poem concludes with "I first surmised the Horses Heads Were toward Eternity", "Eternity" being the religious after life. By saying she "first surmised", Dickinson is suggesting that there is no afterlife and that she was misled by religion. The last line creates a lot of ambiguity to what Dickinson means and The theme of death is explored thoroughly in Dickinson's poem. The personification of death as a civil and kind gentle man is a very unique way to approach the subject. Dickinson's metaphors which are used throughout the poem help create vivid imagery such as her unprepared death, and the grave/house. And her clever use of language help her shift the mood at quickly and dramatically and ultimately make the poem what it is. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Other Poets section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Other Poets essays

  1. The Glass Jar (Gwen Harwood) Analysis. The Glass Jar, dedicated to Vivian Smith, ...

    Full of monstrous creatures with 'trident and vampire fang', and dramatic action, they: ...reached and came near to pierce him in the thicket of his fear. The boy's dream, when he wakes and recalls it, becomes a new conscious memory.

  2. In Dickinson's poetry, the worlds of man and nature are inextricably interlinked'. With reference ...

    This disturbance is also highlighted in the poem 'I heard a fly buzz' where Dickinson mentions 'stillness' in one line and in the following line she says 'heaves of storm' these lines show the contradictory behaviour of nature it also highlights how quickly nature can change its path from something

  1. Cold In The Earth question. This poem uses a lot of deep contradicting diction ...

    She uses this phrase to link to some winter imageries in order to illustrate her bleak and dark emotions.

  2. Social and literary background to Mirza Ghalib's works. Mirza Asadullah Beg Khan known ...

    Throughout the revolt itself Ghalib stayed in Delhi. He himself tells us what he did:" On 11 May1857 the disorders began here. On that same day I shut the doors and gave up going out. One cannot pass the days without something to do, and I began to write my experiences, appending also such news as I heard from time to time."

  1. Using the poems studied so far; discuss the range of Hardys subject matter, as ...

    His reaction to Emma's death is different because hers was much more sudden. In The Going he questions the nature of her death, "Why did you give no hint that night That quickly after the morrow's dawn, You would close your term here, up and be gone" This poem was

  2. How does Dickinson mock puritan values in her poems?

    understand death and she has already understood it, making her self more knowledgeable then the 'scholars'. The word brain associates to mental stability or state of mind, we may interpret that by using the phrase 'in my Brain' it shows Dickinson losing her sanity and losing her mental stability as

  1. Remind yourself of the passage in Tony harrison's poem V. from 'the days last, ...

    'The days images recede to first a glow and then a ball that shrinks to a blank screen.' This imagery of a television screen as it turns off reinforces this idea, with the notion that this is the skinhead turning the TV off after, perhaps watching the Football.

  2. Analysis of "Because I Could Not Stop For Death" by Emily Dickinson

    The parallelism -?We passed? - reflects how quickly time passes in life. The line ?Or rather He passed Us? is the turning point in the poem; the strong passiveness of the line, how she is immobile, signifies that she begins to fully grasp the fact that she is dead.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work