Emily Dickinson and Her Social Seclusion Essay

741 Words Oct 31st, 2012 3 Pages
Dickinson’s I Dwell in Possibility is one great example of how the poet transforms finite to infinite through the imaginative world of poetry. Through the use of metaphors, Dickinson has shown how domestic images such as house, chambers, roof, doors and windows can be extended to infinite imaginations in the poetic world. The “fairer House” (line 2) serves as a metaphor for poetry and the “Visitors” (line 9) who are the fairest may be a metaphor for the readers of poetry. The first four lines compare poem and prose by saying poem is more “superior” (line 4) as it has more “windows” and “doors”—suggesting that poems are subject to more flexible interpretations. The second stanza talks of how this fairer house can be extended to nature such …show more content…
The use of the first-person singular pronoun “I” without other personal pronouns such as you in I Dwell in Possibility also seems to suggest she had no intention of gaining readership for this poem. Most of her poems were also only discovered after her death in 1886 by her young sister Lavinia. Hence, it may imply that Dickinson could be writing just for her own pleasure. Nevertheless, it should also be noted that the extent of Dickinson’s seclusion may be exaggerated as staying in the household was a common practice for women in the 19th century. As a matter of fact, Dickinson was not deprived of social life. Her family was the pillar of the local community and their house was often used as a meeting place for distinguished visitors. According to Higginson, her mentor and literary critic, although Dickinson did feel awkward in some social situations, with her close friends and sisters she could easily indulge in innocent childlike humour. The fact that she wrote letters to her family, schoolmates and friends also shows she was not as socially secluded as it was claimed to be. Hence, her confinement in the domestic setting did

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