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Analysis and comments on We never know how high we are by Emily Dickinson

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Comment 20 of 370, added on January 15th, 2009 at 7:52 PM.

i think that the true meaning of the poem is stated in the last stanza.

"The heroism we recite
Would be a normal thing,
Did not ourselves the cubits warp
For fear to be a king."

Basically it means that if we were all heros then being a hero would be
normal.

The warped cubits part is about pushing the limits or the bar of being
normal.
Cubits meaning a measurement that was usually from the hand to the elbow.

Fear to be the king means that no one wants to rule because it means
stading out.

Lauren from United States
Comment 19 of 370, added on January 2nd, 2009 at 10:10 PM.

"We never know how high we are"
We don't really know what we are capable of or what we have truly
accomplished.
"Till we are called to rise;"
Until we meet a challenge that helps us to grow. (grow how? maybe
confidence, wisedom, experience...or all the above?)
"And then, if we are true to plan,
Our statures touch the skies."
If we are true to ourselves and act with out fear of what we may not be
capable of accomplishing our status due to growth in some way will be
limitless.

"The heroism we recite
Would be a daily thing,"
The heroic or great act we do wouldn't be rare but every day. (due to new
confidence in self and less questioning and limiting ourselves?)
"Did not ourselves the cubits warp
For fear to be a king."
We decided we couldn't do what was truly our potential because we fear
leadership. (cubits- ancient form of measure) (warp- bend and twist)


This is just my personal interpretation of the poem. Take it for what you
will.


Kara from Ireland
Comment 18 of 370, added on July 17th, 2008 at 1:22 PM.

I'm merely stating that to those people who think she is talking about
drugs, there is no proper way to recite ("repeat aloud from memory") drugs.

Jo from United States
Comment 17 of 370, added on March 4th, 2008 at 7:04 PM.

I believe that this poem is very true and inspiring. I play softball and
this makes me think of a time i was asked to play a more difficult position
than i was used to and i did great! I did better than i had before! I
pushed myself as Dickinson explained and I rose to the occasion. Dickinson
explains that we never know what we can do until we push ourselves and
actually try your best and with everything you got. You might be surprises
and don't be afraid to do great!!!

Heather from United States
Comment 16 of 370, added on April 12th, 2007 at 5:42 PM.

i heard this poem in a movie once... hehe... im bored.... i have to write a
poem on a famous poet.... im bored again.... hehe.....

Bob from United States
Comment 15 of 370, added on April 1st, 2007 at 3:36 PM.

This poem was quoted by one of the characters in the movie Seabiscut.
Great movie and great poem! I don't think the main source of inspiration
for the poem was herion. It doesn't fit the rest of her poetic content.
Emily wrote about LIVE, LOVE, and NATURE...
Steve

steve from United States
Comment 14 of 370, added on January 2nd, 2007 at 3:26 PM.

Haha, although some STONERS out there would think it an awesome poem about
drugs, they most obviously would not have described it as "getting high" in
the 1800's, lol...ur digging deep, just not in the right direction! Lol...

JK from United States
Comment 13 of 370, added on April 11th, 2006 at 1:51 AM.

This would have to be one of my favorite poems written by Emily Dickinson.
The meaning of this poem may be different for different people, but to me I
think Emily Dickinson is talking about how we don't discover our own
potential and strengths until we are forced to by being pushed.

Chynna Joy from United States
Comment 12 of 370, added on April 5th, 2006 at 7:56 PM.

I have always understood this poem differently than most others address
it:

To me, it is saying that we don't know the depth of our capabilities until
we are forced by circumstances to rise to the occassion.

We are always capable of doing more, if we push ourselves.

I do not believe that the second stanza refers to humility at all: I think
that Emily is criticizing our reluctance to push ourselves, to take charge,
and to lead. The feats which we consider to be heroic, could happen every
day if we exerted ourselves.

"Warping the cubits" refers to what we actually put forth, not just our
attitudes toward it.

"Fear to be a king" addresses our insecurities, and fear at assuming such a
responsibility or honor.

LG from United States
Comment 11 of 370, added on March 19th, 2006 at 2:28 PM.

This is not about being on drugs! and those of you who think it is, have
very shallow thinking. why don't you go a little deeper, and analyze the
poem!

aeny from United States

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Information about We never know how high we are

Poet: Emily Dickinson
Poem: 1176. We never know how high we are
Volume: Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson
Year: 1955
Added: Jan 9 2004
Viewed: 1509 times


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