Emily Dickinson is an outstanding poet; she had seven poems published while she was living and many more after her death. Her poems are widely known today. Such as, “The Soul Selects her own Society” and “Because I Could not stop for Death.” Dickinson has her own unique use of diction, punctuation, subject matter and form; they each contribute to conveying the theme in her poetry.
A poet’s use of diction refers to the individual choice of words, ranging between conversational and standard levels. Diction can vary throughout the decades. In Dickinson’s time period the words that were used commonly then but not now are being used frequently in “Because I Could not stop for Death” such as tippet, tulle, cornice, and gossamer; these words are called archaisms. These particular archaisms are being used to evoke a different feeling or meaning from the reader, as opposed to just saying shawl instead of tippet and net-like fabric rather than tulle. The use of these words also helps portray the time period the poem is set to be in. archaisms also used in “The Soul Selects her own Society,” but much less frequently. Dickinson also uses connotation in her poem “The Soul Selects her own Society,” as she says, “an Emperor be kneeling / from an ample nation / close the Valves of her attention” (7, 9, 11).
The use of connotation in this poem forces the reader to think deeper and analyze in order to determine the true meanings. Many forms of imagery are used in “Because I Could not stop for Death,” such as “We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain / We passed the Setting Sun” (11-12).
Literary Analysis of the poetry of Emily Dickinson Emily Dickinson is one of the most famous authors in American History, and a good amount of that can be attributed to her uniqueness in writing. In Emily Dickinson's poem "Because I could not stop for Death," she characterizes her overarching theme of Death differently than it is usually described through the poetic devices of irony, imagery, ...
These two lines contain visual imagery that paints a picture in my head of an actual wheat field, its grains blowing in the wind as the sun is setting. It adds to the meaning of the poem by reminiscing life, as it comes to an end. The choice of words in each poem along with their specific uses each help to convey their theme.
The poems “The Soul Selects her own Society” and “Because I Could not stop for Death” both are written with a similar form of punctuation. They both use long dashes rhythmically to interrupt the flow of the meter and cause the effect of a short pause. This is a common form of punctuation throughout Dickinson’s poems. This brief pause allows the reader to soak in what was read and to feel the effect of the words and their true meanings. Dickinson also uses capitalization in a similar and unique way throughout both poems. She capitalizes certain words as if to heighten the meaning, effect and importance those words convey as you read the poems. “The Soul…Society” has a stanza form. It contains six stanzas with four lines each; this is called a quatrain. “Because…Death” has a similar form but with only three stanzas. Both poems are written in iambic trimester but both also have lines written in iambic tetrameter, further demonstrating their similar form. In “Because…Death” this form is especially beneficial, it creates “scenes” in the poem. Beginning with her acceptance of death it goes through the reviewing of her life from childhood, maturity then the descent into death. Similar scenes are created in “The Soul…Society.” It starts with the selection, the rejection of others, and the final close of her attention to anyone one other than whom she selected.
In both poems there are key words that give way to the main subject of the poem. For “The Soul Selects her own Society,” they are the soul, a nation, and selection. For “Because I Could not stop for Death,” they are death, immortality, and eternity. These completely different subjects are used to convey separate themes. I believe the theme in “The Soul…Society” is about how people choose a few close companions that truly matter to them and in doing so they exclude everyone else out. In “Because…Death” I think the overall theme is about how death should not be feared since it is a natural part of natures cycle of life.
An undeniable statement by all, philosophers or not, is that our earthly life will one day cease to exist and every living individual will one day meet their death. A simple definition of death would be the complete annihilation of one self, where the life or awareness one would feel in their brief life would be no more. Basically, the opposite to life. However, even the definition of death may be ...
Diction, form, punctuation, and subject matter are four very important aspects of poetry. They can be used to emphasize key points and send a message to the reader. In the end each are used effectively to contribute their individual effect to convey the theme of the poem.