Literary Analysis Of Because I Could Not Stop For Death

Improved Essays
The poem, “Because I could not Stop for Death” by Emily Dickinson shows the clear dynamics of an outer body viewing of leading into the afterlife. Dickinson has been known to use the concept of light and dark in her previous writing. She is fascinated with the subject of death and portrays this in a comforting manner. It is no wonder the author consistently uses metaphors, dark tones, and styles in each stanza by illustrating the distressing subject of death in a more lighthearted way. Dickinson demonstrates the theme of leading into the afterlife (death) through the metaphor of the carriage. In stanza one, line three, Emily Dickinson states, “The carriage held but just ourselves- And Immortality.” Typically, a carriage is a source of travel …show more content…
For instance she states,“And I had put away- My labor and Leisure too- For his Civility,” “He kindly stopped for me,” “For his civility,” “We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain. We passed the Setting Sun,” “Were towards eternity.” She is describing death is not something to be scared of, rather she is saying death is, in each of these stanzas, evident tone of comfort, civility, safety, and peacefulness are present. She is accepting of death; however, Dickinson shows negative tone through stanza four, “Or rather passed us- The Dews drew quivering and Chill-For only Gossamer, my Gown-My Tippet-only Tulle.” Dickinson is implying the coldness from being in the tomb. She is feeling cold because of the light piece of clothing she has on. Then, she leads the reader back to positive. She clearly feels the reader must view death is a lighter way than a darker …show more content…
In each stanza, the words are broken up into four lines. For instance, Dickinson mentions, “Because I could not stop for death- He kindly Stopped for me-The Carriage held but just ourselves-And Immortality.” In the second stanza she says, “We slowly drove- He knew no haste and I had put away- My labor and leisure too- For his Civility.” In both of these stanzas, there are four lines. Dickson consistently uses this style to possibly draw the reader in. Doing this brings a sense of closure between each stanza because there is an ending thought. Also, ending the thought in this articulate manner she successfully shows the difference between scenes as if she is telling a

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    Emily Dickinson Outline

    • 879 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Dickinson also portrays slant rhyme in her poem when she inscribes, “And I had put away / My labor and my leisure too, / For His Civility” (6-8). • This excerpt accentuated that she is giving up for Death’s politeness and courteousness. This excerpt was clearly an example of a slant rhyme because the word “away” and “civility” sounded similar. 3. Finally, she depicts slant rhyme in “Because I Could Not Stop For Death” through, “The Dews drew quivering and chill / For only Gossamer, my Gown- / My Tippet-only Tulle-…

    • 879 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    This ties into what the meaning of Death is in this poem, because the terms that Emily Dickinson use to substitute the places that the main character goes through while she is in a state of death are imagined as a fascinating, memorable experience. However, the main character becomes a bit dumbfounded by her surroundings and begins to question about why her entire experience of being with Death is a good thing, and not a bad thing. While she contemplates, her journey still remains a mystery. In the sixth stanza, Death’s underlying meaning becomes a beneficial influence when it is known as something that lasts forever. In these final lines, Dickinson has attempted to describe what is unknown about the meaning of Death.…

    • 1955 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Superior Essays

    ØDickinson personifies “Death” and uses alliteration of the “c”.She describes this as a pleasant event that takes place in a carriage. She uses end rhyme in lines 2 and 4 and internal rhyme in line 3 and ØImmortality: (or eternal life) is the concept of living in physical or spiritual form for an infinite length of time. Dickinson’s approach on death is primarily shown through personification where she utilises death and immortality as characters. For instance, “Because I could not stop Death- He kindly stopped for me” This shows that death is being personified from life to afterlife and that she is busy to stop for death. The pleasant tone of the poem further suggests that the author is quite comfortable with death.…

    • 1051 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    As stated earlier, Dickinson had a major preoccupation for quietus, which are vividly present in this poem. During this poem, Dickinson uses the word “kindly” (2) to demonstrate how even though she didn’t stop for death, it didn’t harshly stop for her, instead it stopped with a welcoming aroma. Society has most always categorized death with desolation, but Dickinson takes this notion and completely flips the whole meaning to it to show how death in her poem was not distressing, but yet gentle. Also, when she wrote “He knew no haste” (Dickinson 5), this grasped the idea of death was in no hurry, which is actually very divergent compared to how people view demise. When people often think of someone dying, most of the time they don’t describe it as something leisure and slow moving, but as someone being here one day and gone the next.…

    • 1059 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Using this as the title of the poem is quite literal with the meaning that due to not stopping for death, it “kindly” came for her. The theme of this poem is to embrace the inevitable happening of all living things; Death. She creates a figure of Death as not a evil thing but a calm and kind gentleman. The opening lines confirm this, “He kindly stopped for me –”. It’s is also shown by Death going back and showing her nostalgic memories.…

    • 903 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Mortality is the major theme in this poem and is mainly focused on the narrator’s attitude toward her own death and what her death was actually like. This theme of mortality can be seen in the first line alone “Because I could not stop for Death –” (1) Death is introduced at the very beginning of the poem, where the reader is thrust into the story told by the narrator of her own passing. The reader is also reminded that our own death is far beyond our own control and not something that we choose. The speaker is seemingly unafraid of her own death, and even embraces and accepts it. Similarly to “I heard a Fly buzz,” even the punctuation added to the end of this line speaks to the theme of mortality, the dash being finite and jarring, but also uncertain, as it does not create the feeling of being completely finished.…

    • 920 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    When analysing this poem you can see how Dickinson outlines the subject matter of death stopping for her as if he were to court her to her grave and immortality being their chaperone. This basically means that death is always with her in her mind. The purpose is to reconfigure the representation of death. The poem presents death as a part of the life process. The theme might be calling upon individuals to re-examine their traditional opinions of death and bring about the change required in order to fully understand death 's role in highlighting life and the part of life that death is.…

    • 1132 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    The poet adds to the poem’s rhythm by generating clear images of a wagon journey to a woman’s ultimate place of rest. Dickinson makes use of personification to render each image exact and plain; the poem is comparable to a scrapbook containing assorted pictures that convey a narrative. Death, Perpetuity, and the Sun are personalized; human attributes are given to them, hence making the poem alive. Deth is portrayed as a compassionate and polite driver, whereas Perpetuity is traveling alongside the woman in the wagon; the…

    • 1765 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    This action by death is described as “kind” (2) Another important attribute to the calmness of Because I could not stop for Death is the imagery that sets a perfect scene for a peaceful death. In the first stanza of the poem, Dickinson paints a picture of death as gentleman. “ the Carriage held but ourselves” (3) makes it seem like the speaker is going on a romantic date with her significant other, but in reality she is having death take her to the afterlife. Instead of a quick life passed before your eyes it is a slow journey. In the third stanza the speaker and death pass by two things that represent life.…

    • 1026 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Death Theme In Poetry

    • 1142 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Death in Poetry Death is a very common theme among those who write poetry. Poetry is a way that allows people to express their true feelings in a comfortable way to share with the world. The poems “Because I could not stop for death” by Emily Dickinson and “Death Be Not Proud” by John Donne are reflective of this theme. Although they are very different poems, they both revolve around the central theme of death. Dickinson’s poem is about her journey through life and her outlook on it.…

    • 1142 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays