Comment 1 of 28, added on September 16th, 2004 at 1:08 AM.
After reading Emily Dickinson’s “Through the Dark Sod” I was quite
overwhelmed to begin with. There are words that I didn’t know the meaning
of and phrases that just didn’t make sense. My first impression was,
‘Dickinson was crazy. There is no point in me trying to understand her
work.’ But I am not one to give in to being unable to comprehend a poem.
So I took the plunge head first.
“Through the Dark Sod” Okay. Something is coming through the earth. But
why is “Dark” and “Sod” capitalized? “as Education” Had no clue what that
meant to begin with. I keep swimming and will eventually come back to it.
“The Lily passes sure” Wow! A flower is coming up out of the ground but
why is this word “Lily” capitalized and why is it coming out of the ground
so confidently? “Feels her white foot” She has feet? Lilies don’t have
white feet or feet at all. Well maybe you could consider roots feet. “no
trepidation” I will have to look that word up. apprehension: fear or
uneasiness about the future or a future event (Encarta Online). “Her
faith-no fear” So she is not scared of coming out because she has faith.
But faith in what?
From the first stanza the first time I read this poem I thought, ‘there is
a lily coming out of the earth and she is not scared’.
The first bar in the second stanza begins “Afterward- in the Meadow-” .
After the flower comes out of the ground she’s in a meadow. Simple enough.
“Swinging her Beryl Bell” Well, what is a Beryl and why is her bell
beryl? Beryl is a gemlike mineral, crystalline and comes in the color
white. HEY! Lilies are white! “ The Mold-life-all forgotten-now-” Mold
rhymes with old. Maybe she forgot her old life. But what old life? “In
Ecstasy-and Dell-” She’s really happy in that valley. But I thought she
was in a meadow. Hmmm… After the lily comes fearlessly into the meadow she
forgets her old life and is happy in the valley. Maybe I should do a
little bit more research before I make my complete idea.
Emily Dickinson was a somewhat very religious type person to my knowledge,
so what if I go from that aspect? “Dark Sod” Dark is usually connected
with sin and immorality which is also connected to dirt or sod. She’s in
sin and immorality in the beginning of the poem. I’m still trying to
figure out what the “Education” has to do with it. Lilies are white and
white generally represent purity or morality. Lilies are also associated
with the Christian holiday Easter. Christ has something to do with this.
The lily has a foot which leads me to believe she can stand possibly in her
faith without fear or apprehension. Okay. My idea is forming. The Lily
represents a female and she was in sin but being educated about Christ, she
has faith in him. That he died so that she could be come pure, or without
sin, as the color white represents. She can believe in Him without fear
because of Her faith in him.
“Afterward-in the Meadow” - Meadow can represent living out life in the
world. There will be other Lilies who have accepted Christ and possibly
weeds that haven’t and I see a meadow as a very vast place, like the world.
She is obviously happy, because she is swinging about, to and fro. “Beryl
Bell” - So She is a crystalline gem of the color white in the shape of a
bell. Sounds somewhat angelic. Now what is the “Mold-Life”? Well
according to Encarta Online mold can be dirt. Dirt is in connection to sin.
Therefore her life oh sin is forgotten, not only by her, but also by
Christ. “In Ecstasy-and Dell” - You might expect Ecstasy to come as the
last word in this poem because the last word leaves an impression in the
mind. But dell was put instead. She wanted to leave the fact that this
lilies faith was kept during the awesome times and in the ruff times. So
basically, this poem is about being saved in Christ.