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Analysis and comments on There's a certain Slant of light, by Emily Dickinson

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Comment 31 of 201, added on February 25th, 2008 at 3:20 AM.

When I first read this poem, it didn’t really click until I read the other
postings and then re-read the poem. Only then did I fully grasp what
Dickinson was trying to represent. The poem explains how depression affects
the human. The slant of light is the depression. The "Cathedral Tunes" are
the actual weight the person feels from the depression. But all of this is
given to us by God, as shown in the line, "Sent us of the Air--". Also in
the line, “None may teach it...” the reader observes that only God can give
us this type of pain and no one else will be able to understand it. This
kind of pain leaves an “emotional scar” or an “internal difference”, only
one we can see. This actually improves us as a person and helps us deal
with more painful experiences.

Ola B. from United States
Comment 30 of 201, added on February 24th, 2008 at 7:12 PM.

This poem is about the sliver of hope that there is in every situation. No
matter how bad things may be at the time, there is always that one little
sparkle of light. While reading this poem, it made me reflect on the hard
times I have been through and how things always turned out right. The word
"scar" in the poem had the most impact. Scars all have stories and when
there new, they hurt, but over time they heal and it makes you a little
tougher.

Amanda from United States
Comment 29 of 201, added on February 23rd, 2008 at 8:43 PM.

When I first read the poem "There's a Certain Slant of Light" I really did
not understand it. I had to read it over and over again to get the full
understanding of the poem. In this poem, Emily Dickinson is describing a
certain light. This light is the light that reaches out to us and takes us
from this cold world once we die. Our cold world is represented by the
winter afternoons, "There's a certain Slant of light, Winter Afternoons--".
In the poem Dickinson describes how Heaven is a beautiful place but it is
also a hurtful place because we have to lose our loved ones to it;
"Heavenly Hurt, it gives us --
We can find no scar". This poem is one of Emily Dickinson's best. It grabs
your attention and makes you think about death differently. The "Shadows --
hold their breath --" because they will not be shadows anymore once we die
but we all have to leave our winter afternoon sometime.



Shayla from United States
Comment 28 of 201, added on February 22nd, 2008 at 1:35 PM.

To me, this poem is a look inside to depression. In Dickenson's day there
was very little facts known about the mental illness of depression, but its
affects are thusly noted. The cause of the speaker's sadness and pain, i
believe, was the death of someone very dear to them. Such a loss can result
in feelings of resentment and sorrow at things that were once normal and
pleasent to them, because the one they lost will never be with them to
enjoy those things again. "Winter Afternoons- That oppresses, like the Heft
Of Cathedral Tunes-" the light of a winter afternoon is normally a welcomed
break from the consant bleakness of the season, but the depressed
individual doesn't see it that way. To them the light mocks them and
delivers their "Heavenly Hurt" that leaves no evident "scar" but
internally, emotionally, the scars grow in number.

nikki cantrell from United States
Comment 27 of 201, added on February 22nd, 2008 at 5:52 AM.

In this poem, Dickinson is depresses due to a "Slant of light" in "winter
afternoon". She feels said because it it "oppresses" her, and internally
hurting her that why she "find no scar". Also, the dictions that she uses
makes it more unbearable for which she deeply in pain.

Hai from United States
Comment 26 of 201, added on February 22nd, 2008 at 2:42 AM.

Dickinson expresses that even though people may endure hardships and go
through troublesome times, there will always be a guiding light in the end.
This certain oppression results with no physical hurt or harm, but it
creates depression. It also sends a secluded feeling as its presence is
recognized. " When it comes, the Landscape listens- Shadows-hold their
breath- When it goes, 'tis like the Distance On the look of Death-." When
its presence is noticed, no action is made because it will soon pass, to
spread sadness somewhere else. This poem represents the times in our life,
where it seems like all hope is lost, but it will not last forever.

Lakiva S. from United States
Comment 25 of 201, added on February 21st, 2008 at 9:45 PM.

Originally, I assumed this poem was about a depressing feeling a few people
get during the bleak winter months. Unsurprisingly, my initial idea was
horribly off-mark. What this short poem is actually about is depression. To
fully convey this theme, Dickinson used winter imagery. An example of such
imagery would be the line “There's a certain Slant of light, Winter
Afternoons”. Because of my lack of a soul, I did not have any meaningful
emotional reaction to the poem.

Yaw A. from United States
Comment 24 of 201, added on February 21st, 2008 at 7:33 PM.

This poem was very confusing at first. Each word was getting me no where
near comprehending the poem. After I read some of the comments posted it
hit me and I realized that the "slant of light" is hope. I think everyone
fears death but the only thing that reassures them is hope. Its like a dark
room with a window cracked letting in hope. Dickinson says "None may teach
it-any" meaning hope is not taught but learned throughout living.

Amber C. from United States
Comment 23 of 201, added on February 21st, 2008 at 10:05 AM.

Emily Dickenson's poem "There's a Certain Slant of Light" is composed of
intense emotional words in her attempt to express the torrent of feelings
within her own mind. Ms. Dickinson was trying to shed some "light" on the
unknown illness where "we can find no scar, but internal difference."
"Theres a Certain Slant of Light" inspired feelings of sympathy and sorrow
within myself for the confusion that Emily was feeling. In our present time
there is hardly an illness, mental or physical, that cannot be diagnosed
and treated with some sort of medication. Yet Emily Dickenson speaks of "An
imperial affliction" that had no name or treatment.

Sammy Brown from United States
Comment 22 of 201, added on February 21st, 2008 at 9:55 AM.

I think the "Certain Slant of Light" is hope. Hope that one day we may see
or know something more of death than pain and loss of loved ones. I think
Dickinson belives that maybe one day we will lose someone and feel no pain
and have no scar whether it is visual or internal. I disagree with this
thought. I think that pain is a part of life and that the hope of death
without pain is lost along with the one who died.

Jacquie

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Information about There's a certain Slant of light,

Poet: Emily Dickinson
Poem: 258. There's a certain Slant of light,
Volume: Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson
Year: 1955
Added: Jan 9 2004
Viewed: 977 times
Poem of the Day: Aug 4 2002


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