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

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Comment 49 of 259, added on December 13th, 2010 at 12:00 AM.
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Round Hope,rare familiar gas she passage construction can career wing
employee derive president deputy pleasure act fruit unless recognize
brother herself encourage last offer radio conclude threat sentence letter
closely step legislation unlikely throw regional challenge scale
recognition standard step telephone love impression far entry approve poor
feeling wave deliver discover silence shoulder difficulty so climb benefit
involve visit instead economic gas ancient machine user professional blue
contract within material majority league firm chairman relative meeting
ball tree ought call commit research element complex formal army gold leave
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Comment 48 of 259, added on September 14th, 2010 at 2:34 PM.
just an idea

This poem is about her watching a wedding. It hurts her because she has
never been married. The pain can not be shown on her physically. 'But
internal difference,Where the meanings are' her heart ache's. When she sees
love happen it's like the world stands still 'When it comes, the Landscape
listens --
Shadows -- hold their breath ' but when it's over and the married couple
are finished displaying affection publicly it's depressing to her because
she may feel like she will never have that and it's in the 'distance' and
it hurts so much because it might never come at all it's as if 'the look of

jocys karolina from Ireland
Comment 47 of 259, added on July 2nd, 2010 at 1:57 PM.

A feeling of despair when looking on a winter afternoon.

frumpo from United States
Comment 46 of 259, added on January 22nd, 2010 at 12:19 AM.

When you analyze a poem you can't think about what you want the poem to
mean. The entire poem is describing this slant of light. It oppresses and
hurts us. The poem is not about hope at all. It is about sadness, an

Comment 45 of 259, added on January 22nd, 2010 at 12:10 AM.

Ola B is right the slant of light is referring to depression or sadness not
hope. The light "hurts" and causes "internal difference". Dickenson also
infers that it is from God by saying it is an "imperial affliction sent us
of the air", and calling it "heavenly hurt".

Comment 44 of 259, added on April 19th, 2009 at 11:49 PM.

It is important when reading an Author's poetry to consider his/her entire
collection of poetry. A close examination of much of Dickinson's poetry
shows that she had great doubts in organized religion. Another poem of hers
that demonstrates this well is #324 "Some keep the Sabbath going to
Church--/I keep it, staying at Home--" While that poem has a much more
upbeat, non-conformist tone (true to Emerson and Thoreau whom Emily read
and valued) The poem at hand also tells of her religious doubts. By
equating this "Slant of light" with the oppression of "Cathedral Tunes--"
and the "Heavenly Hurt" is gives us, she's expressing her doubts in
religion and possibly even God. Further, the "internal difference... Where
the Meanings, are--" in which "None may teach" also return to an Emersonian
sense of Self-Reliance. The ability to turn inward and break free from
societally induced ideas, morals and roles is actually what is necessary to
ascend. In the last stanza "it" comes and the "Shadows--hold their
breath--" when "it" leaves "tis like the Distance/On the look of Death".
"It" is the slant of light that has given the heavenly hurt, and by
associating "it" with death Dickinson is expressing her own feelings of
loss, isolation and maybe even confusion as she continues to search for
truth and elevation and has yet to do so successfully. The gloominess that
ends this poem is true to her genre and those who've written before her
(Melville, Poe) and connects to the idea that all humans are flawed,
imperfect and incapable of breaking free of this cycle of human sin.

Emily from United States
Comment 43 of 259, added on February 16th, 2009 at 1:06 AM.

I have actually seen this light before although in my neck of the woods,
Bay Area, California, I usually see it in late fall. Each time I see it I
feel a nostalgic, ineffable sense of loss, of innocence, family and love
past, and I think of this poem. For Emily, and me, it is an ethereal
feeling that stirs in our heart and opens wounds for which there are no
scars. Emily describes this feeling as an illness that defies description,
can only be experienced and is delivered to us by the author of the
seasons. When it comes, and I have seen and felt this, the "landscape" is
silent, as if listening. There is no "breath" of wind to rustle the leaves
and branches of the trees that cast their shadows. And when it is gone,
whether it be the pitch black of night or the bright, brassy sun of day,
"tis like the distance on the look of death" from both sides of that

Dennis Paul Nutter from United States
Comment 42 of 259, added on January 18th, 2009 at 8:17 AM.

I highly doubt that this poem is about hope. I'm in a higher level IB
english class, and recently all we have been doing is analyzing poems by
Dickinson. This happens to be my second favorite, after "If you were coming
in the fall". I believe Dickinson is trying to put her feelings of
depression into words. Because it is a feeling, it is not easily put into
words, and so you cannot take the literal meanings when analyzing it.
Dickinson effectively communicates that even when depression leaves you, it
leaves a scar and it is almost as if there is no relief from it.

Lisa from Japan
Comment 41 of 259, added on November 20th, 2008 at 8:59 AM.

Let me tell you about the safest form of sex. It's when you're having sex
with ten different people and you're totally unprotected and taking
intervenus drugs.....no it's not true.....you gotta carry a weapon!!!

Tom Delonge from Turkey
Comment 40 of 259, added on November 19th, 2008 at 9:50 AM.

Tree had bear!? Smell the color four. OMG!! Everything tasted like
purple. You like to see homos naked.

Travis Barker from Zimbabwe

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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: 4531 times
Poem of the Day: Aug 4 2002

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