Hope


(Poem No.35 of my favourite short poems)

Hope-Housemartin

Drawing in pen and ink … WHB – May 2017

HOPE

BY Emily Dickinson

“Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –

And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
And sore must be the storm –
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm –

I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the strangest Sea –
Yet – never – in Extremity,
It asked a crumb – of me.

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A delightful, short and simply expressed poem, which expands a metaphor into a delightfully positive view of the power of Hope in our lives.  It remains with us through gale and storm, demanding nothing of us.  

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The preferred use by Emily Dickinson of dashes to punctuate her verses has been, more recently, commented on light-heartedly in a short poem of Wendy Cope’s . . .

EMILY DICKINSON

Higgledy-piggledy
Emily Dickinson
Liked to use dashes
Instead of full stops

Nowadays, faced with such
Idiosyncrasy,
Critics and editors
Send for the cops.

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7 thoughts on “Hope

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