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Analysis and comments on I like a look of Agony, by Emily Dickinson

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Comment 5 of 25, added on April 6th, 2009 at 10:16 PM.

What's up with the "beads upon the forehead/ by homely anguish strung"

jjosh from New Zealand
Comment 4 of 25, added on January 3rd, 2009 at 12:15 AM.

I find it to be fascinating. I opened my book of Dickinson's poems, and the
marker just happened to be set on the page where this pome was on. Once I
read it, her words were ingraved into my mind. Agony is real, it is not
something anyone can fake, not even men, who in her time were considered
superior. It makes everyone fragile, vulnerable, and makes it known that
not one person is perfect.

Karson from United States
Comment 3 of 25, added on May 12th, 2006 at 7:32 AM.

Dickinson often surprises the reader by shocking point of view on the
matters of dying. The speaker of the poem presents physical, naturalistic
and realistic description of the death. It differs from numerous spiritual
descriptions. The picture is really shocking, but present truthfulness of
the time of dying. The moment of the agony is the only one when the person
does not deceive the others.

Andrzej Samulak from Poland
Comment 2 of 25, added on November 13th, 2005 at 4:27 PM.

sandra, i completely agree with your statement... Also, an analogy can be
made with this poem & photographs- Dickinson seems to appreciate the
realistic portrayals of individuals (the candid shots) in comparison to the
posed (or pretentious/fake) pictures...

Comment 1 of 25, added on March 17th, 2005 at 9:23 PM.

"Auto Wreck" by Karl Shapiro is a more contemporary version of Dickinson's
poem. We are all familiar with how drivers rubberneck when passing an fatal
accident. Though we rarely admit it, we are fascinated by pain and death.
Partly it's the "there but for the grace of god, go I," sentiment. But
also, our present day society hides truth from us so often that we don't
know how to act appropriately. Death and mutilation are viewed by those who
work in an ER, but the rest of us watch television and imagine that we
really know what tragedy looks like. Learning has been defined as a change
in behavior. If we really learned the consequences of a car wreck, we'd
drive differently ever after rather than continuing to drive recklessly and
believing we are immortal. Dickinson tells us agony is true as opposed to
the social faces we wear most of the time. She prizes the authentic, not
the "Eleanor Rigby" faces that only pretend to care or pretend to be
communicating with us. Dickinson was a recluse, but no doubt in a crisis,
she would have been there to tend the sick or hold the hand of the dying.
She appreciated those moments because only then can we be sure something
authentic is being shared between people.

sandra from United States

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Information about I like a look of Agony,

Poet: Emily Dickinson
Poem: 241. I like a look of Agony,
Volume: Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson
Year: 1955
Added: Jan 9 2004
Viewed: 1861 times

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