Emily Dickinson today is gaining her deserved place alongside Walt Whitman as one of the two greatest American poets of the nineteenth century. Beginning always with particulars of personal experience, her poems encompass life and death, love and longing, joyfulness and sorrow. With sparse, precise language, she conveys a penetrating vision of the natural world and an acute understanding of the most profound human truths.
In "I'm Nobody! Who Are You?" Emily Dickinson notes, "How dreary to be somebody." Perhaps Dickinson's desire for anonymity was the driving force behind both her retreat into seclusion and her decision to keep secret an immense body of work (some 1,775 poems were discovered after her death). Two of her favorite themes, nature and loss, appear repeatedly in this collection, which includes "Each That We Lose Takes Part of Us," "Requiem," "Gone," and several floral-themed works ("The Tulip," "With Flowers," and "My Rose," to name a few). These beautiful poems are well read by a number of talented actors, including Glenda Jackson, Amy Irving, Meryl Streep, and Alfre Woodard. Of the three volumes in this series, this is perhaps the most moving. (Running time: 45 minutes, 1 cassette) --C.B. Delaney