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Analysis and comments on A narrow Fellow in the Grass by Emily Dickinson

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Comment 26 of 146, added on March 28th, 2007 at 7:42 AM.

I think she is talking about a sneaky kind of person -- one who can't be
pinned down. And who likes to startle people by sort of appearing and
disappearing. I think her last stanza is quite filled with contempt,
saying he (the snake) is tight-assed, so to speak, and has no real spine,
or has nothing real to offer. Yes, she uses the experience of seeing an
actual snake to paint this portrait. The unbraiding of the sun is like
when a snake moves through a field of golden dried grasses and this
describes how it looks; I've seen it. One thing that's always struck me
about this poem is how odd the second to the last stanza is -- it seems to
stand on its own as a proverb. (the one about feeling cordiality) but it
further emphasizes how all of nature is welcome except the snake. Sexual
or not, the snake of the bible or not, she just doesn't like sneakiness and
dishonesty.

ea
Comment 25 of 146, added on March 28th, 2007 at 6:56 AM.

We would go for a snake, rather, although the poet wanted it to be
ambiguous.Still the snake is in disguise though it moves (wrinkles) like a
snake.
We appreciate a sense of humour of the poet and the ease with which she
switches from one meaning to another.

NKJO Przemyśl, college students, group III A from Poland
Comment 24 of 146, added on February 27th, 2006 at 6:07 PM.

for me, everyone is free to interpret this poem as he feels, it can have a
sexual connotation but I can't justify yet or maybe I'm too much influenced
by your misplaced remarks...

islandgirl
Comment 23 of 146, added on January 18th, 2006 at 5:35 PM.

The poem can be interpreted literally, but that is hardly an
interpritation. She was a sexually repressed women who remained a virgin
her entire life. She was also rejected by the man she loved. Those who dont
think it's sexual at all are not looking at the whole picture of who she
was. This poem definitely has an intentional sexual connotation to it.

Xavi from United States
Comment 22 of 146, added on January 8th, 2006 at 8:31 PM.

its "Unbraiding in the sun" ... unbraid means to undo the braids of .. like
unbraid my hair or a whip lash like it is in the poem.

Turk from Turkey
Comment 21 of 146, added on November 29th, 2005 at 1:55 PM.

What does she mean by "Unbraiding the sun" in then 6th line of stanza 3?

KRo
Comment 20 of 146, added on November 27th, 2005 at 6:07 PM.

I dont beleive this poem is simply about a snake. It is not like Emily
Dickinson to write a completely literal poem. Yes it is describing a snake
but there has to be something else to it. Dickinson's poems were all very
deep in metaphor and allegory.

G from United States
Comment 19 of 146, added on November 4th, 2005 at 1:12 AM.

This poem was published in 1866 and probably composed in 1865 (according to
the WWW). For those who would give it a "Freudian" interpretation, note
that Sigmund Freud was born in 1856. I don't quite believe that this poem
is sexual. It is certainly not explicitly "Freudian".

Peter from United States
Comment 18 of 146, added on November 2nd, 2005 at 11:37 PM.

I never knew, until reading this thread, about the Conspiracy Theory School
of literary criticism.

Stefan Lynch from United States
Comment 17 of 146, added on November 2nd, 2005 at 11:44 AM.

the date this poem was written should have been included with the poem.

Ron from United States

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Information about A narrow Fellow in the Grass

Poet: Emily Dickinson
Poem: 986. A narrow Fellow in the Grass
Volume: Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson
Year: 1955
Added: Jan 9 2004
Viewed: 37084 times


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