Heart! We will forget him!
You and I — tonight!
You may forget the warmth he gave —
I will forget the light!

When you have done, pray tell me
That I may straight begin!
Haste! lest while you’re lagging
I remember him!

Analysis, meaning and summary of Emily Dickinson's poem Heart! We will forget him!


  1. Rachel And Joe says:

    The Parable of the old man and the young vs. Heart! We will forget him!

    Have you ever thought about how love and war compare together? By comparing two poems you can see all the elements that make up the poem and also the effects the elements have on the poem. In the poem “The Parable of the Old Man and the Young” Wilfred Owen compares the parable of Abraham and Isaac to the start of World War 1. In the poem “Heart! We Will Forget Him!” Emily Dickenson writes about wanting to forget a man and the feelings he had given. The two poems are similar in the metaphor and symbol, and their free verse, but are different in the imagery, personification, and alliteration and this causes both poems to give off different emotions.

    First, the alliteration in these two poems is different because of the ‘voice’ it gives off in the poems make you feel different things. Different letters make you have different feelings and in these two poems the different alliteration has different effects on the overall poem. In “The Parable of the Old Man and the Young” the alliteration occurs with ‘A’s this is on line 10, “An Angel,” also “Abraham” occurs a lot in this poem. The many A’s bring attention and shows emphasis on the word or phrases. In the poem “Heart! We Will Forget Him!” The alliteration occurs with ‘W’s on line 1, “We Will…” this gives a weepy sounds. She is sad because of the man that left and the ‘W’s create the weepy ‘voice’ of the poem. Although, alliteration occurs in both of these poems it is different because the alliteration has different effects on both of the poems.

    Also, the free verse in both poems is similar because of the changing emotions through the poems. Both poems have changing emotions and the free verse gives that feeling it also has the effect on the poems of being shaky and not orderly. In “The Parable of the Old Man and the Young” there is no set meter because the story changes and the emotions through the poem change. An example of this is in line 14 and 15, “Offer the Ram of pride instead of him. But the old man would not so, but slew his son.” These lines show the changes in the moods of the story, the positive of him not having to kill his son then negative of him killing his son. Also in the poem “Heart! We Will Forget Him!” The free verse changes because she wants to forget him but then remembers the love. The meter through the poem changes because the emotion she is showing changes. First she is upset (torque) line 1, “Heart we will forget him.” Then iamb because she knows she still loves him line 8, “I remember him.” This shows how the emotions in this story make the story free verse. Both poems are similar because of the free verse types and the effects on the poem.
    Third, these poems have such a different feel to them with there imagery, because one pictures discomfort and the other you picture joyful things. Thanks to the way they display their imagery you can feel opposite emotions. For poem 1 close your eyes and picture “being bond and beat”(line 7) give the physical ora of hate discomfort and fear. I hate being bonded it takes it makes me mad violent and want to fight back. And for poem 2 you look deep in your heart upon the memories of life. “I will forget the light. When you have done, pray tell me,” line 4 &5. The joys of a companion by you to give you hope love and security. If you close your eyes and think about “Parable” and then “Heart” they make you feel completely and orderly different using there imagery to paint the picture for you.

    Next, due to the metaphors helping these 2 poems feel different they have the ability to feel happy or sad. Thanks to the way they put there metaphors theses poems felt the soul differently. In “Parable,” “The fire and iron,” implies the binding and killing of the kid. The fire symbolize the pain of death well the iron is bring compared to oppression. Well in “Heart” the light is like the good and brightness “I will forget the light,” line 4. The emotions that can be brought by love is very close to what light does for ones body. Comparing things in this manner helps us know if the poem gives us the filling of joy or pain.

    Fifth, through the personification in these poems it is different because the fact that “Parable” just has negative feelings to it and the other poem has a tainted joy attached to it. With being a pacifist and having mostly pacifistic friends we tend to have a distaste for violence, but most of us under stand the taint to the joy of a relationship with the way our life have been driven. For “Parable,” “ram of pride”(line 14) the ram is representing one of mans biggest characteristic week points that leads them to do many things. In “Heart,” “Heart! We will forget him!” line 1she tries to have her heart and mind be as one person to force the pain from her body. With the personification making some of humanities worse traits take form forces us to fill the bad and good in us all.

    Finally, another similarity is in the symbols of the poems and the meanings of the symbols. In both the poems the symbols stand for ‘heavenly’ type of position. “In Heart! We Will Forget Him!” One of the symbols is shown on line 4, “I will forget the light.” The light is referring to her life being dark and he came into her life bringing light and goodness and purity. In “The Parable of the Old Man and the Young” one of the symbols is found on line 10, “An Angel…” This poem is comparing World War 1 to the story of Abraham and Isaac and the ram and the angel in the story I think is also representing higher officer officials and how they didn’t have to sacrifice those soldiers. The angel is like the official because it has divine power. The two poems are similar in the symbols because the effect on the poems is similar in the sense of both poems had sacrifice and the symbols gave you a sense of hope then sadness. There was hope given by the ‘angel’ but the boy was still sacrificed and the ‘light’ was all the good he brought to her but then he took it away. In these poems the symbols are not the same but the meaning and effects are similar.

    These two poems are similar in a few ways such as metaphor and symbol while they are also different in imagery, personification, alliteration, and meter. The metaphors are similar because they both are comparing oppression of war or love. Next, the symbols are similar because they are both symbolizing heavenly positive aspects. Also, it is different in personification because in “Parable” the ram is given characteristics of pride and in ”Heart” she gives her heart human characteristics to forget. The alliteration also has a different feel in both poems because in ”Parable” it uses A for the alliteration cause a more bold sound and in ”Heart” the alliteration uses W’s making it a weepy sad sound. They are also similar in the effects of their free verse because it shows the changing emotions the characters are going through. By comparing these two poems you get a feel for love being compared to war and they pains they both have.

  2. ahmed bassiony says:

    it is the most intersting poem i have ever seen

  3. vanessa says:

    What an amazing poem! It really touches my deep heart, but i still wonder how we could forget those who once gave us warmth and love, those impressed us so deeply. We can try to forget but at some unexpected moment we will still miss them from the bottom of heart. That feeling is so strong that you feel like your heart bleeding. Yes we are keeping bleeding as in the song sung by Leona Lewis. This is called Bleeding Love.

  4. Lenneke & Marissa says:

    we looooooooove this poem soooo much! first we hated poetry, but now we’re addicted to this poem. it helps us in bad times! often we read it for each other in times of trouble. and it makes us feel better, because it’s soooooooooo deep !
    sometimes we don’t go to school, and we stay home, so we can read this poem all day long! its just the best poem of the world!
    oh my god its so amazing, how someone can write something this beautifull. we didnt know this was possible!
    () ( __ _ )
    [] ( o )
    [:::] ( \____/ )
    [:::] ( ——— ) doei

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Do you have any comments, criticism, paraphrasis or analysis of this poem that you feel would assist other visitors in understanding the meaning or the theme of this poem by Emily Dickinson better? If accepted, your analysis will be added to this page of American Poems. Together we can build a wealth of information, but it will take some discipline and determination.