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A Conversation with Emily – Shawna R. B. Atteberry
Mar 132008

A couple of friends from the blogosphere have posted Emily Dickinson poetry in the last two days. I sat down to read some of her poems and had a conversation with her. It seemed like a very good conversation considering that March is National Women’s History Month.

It is easy to work when the soul is at play–
But when the soul is in pain–
The hearing him put his playthings up
Makes work difficult–then–

It is simple, to ache in the Bone, or the Rind–
But Gimlets–among the nerve–
Mangle daintier–terribler–
Like a Panter in the Glove–
From The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson, 244

“Scared Child”
The creative soul
Is a child who loves to play.
But when darkness comes
And depression grows,
The child is scared
Hiding under the sheets.

I’m Nobody! Who are you?
Are you–Nobody–Too?
Then there’s a pair of us!
Don’t tell! they’d advertise–you know!

How dreary–to be–Somebody!
How public–like a Frog–
To tell one’s name–the livelong June–
To an admiring Bog!
From The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson, 288.

Tell me:
Do you understand
This obsession with
Why desire
Fifteen minutes of fame
At any cost?
Can walk down the street,
And shop in peace.
Are the ones who are free,
And live in peace.

“Scared Child” and “Celebrity?” (c) 2008 by Shawna R. B. Atteberry

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