Dickinson's little ditty (V)


In Emily Dickinson's little poem, V, this short and sweet four-line summary of the bee's life tells all. "The pedigree of honey / Does not concern the bee;" It is interesting how at times we let the simplest things complicate our lives. In this instance, Emily is telling us the bee does not put merit or measure to the nectar it collects. "A clover, any time, to him / Is aristocracy." If aristocracy is a high-ranking form, then the bee thinks highly of all it has. Be happy with what you have. It may be more than others have. Again, this reminds me of a song....Collin Raye's "Harder Cards." This is the refrain:

Don't you sit and judge me

From some high and mighty seat;

Don't you shrug it off until you've walked

A mile in my bare feet.

For there are people that you

Pass by everyday

With harder cards than yours

In life to play.


Or would you "bee" happy with what you have?
I also like that poem so simple, yet such a powerful message.

Emily's poems convey many messages.It's as though her nature poems are telling stories of her life.

Yeah, I agree with what you're saying, a simple thing can mean the world.

And to respond to your other comment, about sexuality in the first poem:
It is totally and completely possible to interpret it that way. "New feet within my garden go,/New fingers stir the sod..."
This could very well be a description about experiences with a new lover. "Garden" and "Sod" could easily mean her female fertility.
The next two lines, about the troubadour betraying solitude, could be birth of children, or responsibility of parenthood.

No! Actually, Michael, Pat does have a very good point. When we listen to the podcast, we are made aware of the fact that practically nothing is known about Dickinson's love life, so perhaps some of the way that she made it known, besides through the letters that were burned, was through her writing.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael McCullough published on September 16, 2010 2:35 PM.

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