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Thread: Poem Analysis

  1. #1
    elvis93 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Poem Analysis

    p { margin-bottom: 0.21cm; } Good afternoon guys!!!
    Would you be so kind to correct gramatically my interpretation of this poem?
    It is written by Emily Dickinson and I would be delighted if you give me also your personal judgement about it.
    Thanks a lot in advance.


    The poem is the following:


    “Nature” is what we see
    The Hill The Afternoon
    Squirrel Eclipse the Bumble tree
    Nay Nature is Heaven
    Nature is what we hear
    The Bobolink the Sea
    Thunder the Cricket
    Nay Nature is Melody
    Nature is what we know
    Yet have no art to say
    So impotent Our Wisdom is
    To her semplicity.






    Analysis and interpretation of the poem:


    The poetess describes the immense beauty of Nature by emphatizing its intensity and magnificence, which is in contrast with the human being who is so tiny and insignificant.
    We can only admire “its semplicity” without saying a word because we cannot do this even if we want to.
    We live in a world in which macrocosm and microcosm doesn't coincide as we are not part of this “semplicity”, which even nowadays is mostly incomprehensible.
    We are inert observers who cannot explain neither the easiest meccanisms of the surrounding universe,nor describe properly her beauty.
    It is clearly visible that the mankind is totally disanthropomorphised by nature as they're two different realities.
    On the other hand,I think Dickinson wanted to highlight the tendence of humanity to magnify and make the things bigger than they are, maybe because we have forgotten that the real beauty can be found beyond the spontaneous things such as a “squirrel, the bumble tree, an eclipse” or maybe because we are afraid of this semplicity.

  2. #2
    birdeen's call is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Poem Analysis

    Quote Originally Posted by elvis93 View Post
    p { margin-bottom: 0.21cm; } Good afternoon guys!!!
    Would you be so kind to correct gramatically my interpretation of this poem?
    It is written by Emily Dickinson and I would be delighted if you give me also your personal judgement about it.
    Note that you have written that Emily Dickinson wrote your interpretation. The intended meaning is clear of course, but please be careful.

    The poetess describes the immense beauty of Nature by emphatizing its intensity and magnificence, which is in contrast with the human being who is so tiny and insignificant.
    You need to justify this. Where in the poem does she do it? Which lines are telling us about Nature's magnificence?
    We can only admire “its semplicity” without saying a word because we cannot do this even if we want to.
    The word is "simplicity", even though it's "semplicita" in Italian.
    We live in a world in which macrocosm and microcosm doesn't coincide as we are not part of this “semplicity”, which even nowadays is mostly incomprehensible.
    Again, you need to justify this interpretation.
    We are inert observers who cannot explain neither the easiest meccanisms of the surrounding universe,nor describe properly her beauty.
    The word is "mechanisms".

    Generally, your interpratation and analysis lacks analysis. You just said what you think the poem means. You didn't say why you think so. You didn't analyze the poetic devices used in the poem either.

  3. #3
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Poem Analysis

    "disanthropomorphised"
    Anthropomorphism is "the attribution of human characteristics or behaviour to a god, animal, or object." (Oxford.) It's impossible to disanthropomorphise Man. You'd do better trying to explain what you mean.

    "poetess" is outdated. Most academics in English departments would mark you down for this (and probably refer you to the university's rules on sexist language!) Dickinson is a poet.

  4. #4
    elvis93 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Poem Analysis

    Thank you so much birdeen's call and Raymott
    I'll try to plug all my gaps.
    I've never written a poem interpretation, but I'm really interested in English Literature and I wanted to make an attempt.
    As I can see, I need to learn lots of things but, thanks to your corrections, maybe I'll have the chance to improve. :)

  5. #5
    elvis93 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Poem Analysis

    I'm sorry Raymott for using "poetess"(I absentmindedly translated it by starting from the italian word "poetessa").
    It wasn't my intention to underestimate Dickinson's talent(on the contrary I deeply look up to her) or use a sexist language.

  6. #6
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: Poem Analysis

    Quote Originally Posted by elvis93 View Post
    I'm sorry Raymott for using "poetess"(I absentmindedly translated it by starting from the italian word "poetessa").
    It wasn't my intention to underestimate Dickinson's talent(on the contrary I deeply look up to her) or use a sexist language.
    I know it wasn't. It doesn't worry me at all. But it does worry people in academic English departments, and I thought you should know that.

  7. #7
    minnieuk is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Poem Analysis

    You say you've not done a poetry analysis before so I hope I'm not being too critical here. I think you've made a good first attempt at interpreting a poem. Dickinson can be very difficult to get to grips with. I do have a few comments.

    Firstly, you shouldn't really use 'I think'. In English Lit essays we do use 'I' but not to express our own feelings. So you can say 'I suggest' or 'I would argue' but not 'I think' or 'I feel'. Just a small point but if you want to write an academic analysis it is preferred.

    This probably isn't your fault as I assume you were given the poem to look at but your version has all the punctuation stripped out. Emily Dickinson was a pioneer of using the dash for punctuation. Punctuation is really important in poetry and without it the poem can lose some of its original meaning. The proper structure is as follows:

    "Nature" is what we see—
    The Hill—the Afternoon—
    Squirrel—Eclipse—the Bumble bee—
    Nay—Nature is Heaven—
    Nature is what we hear—
    The Bobolink—the Sea—
    Thunder—the Cricket—
    Nay—Nature is Harmony—
    Nature is what we know—
    Yet have no art to say—
    So impotent Our Wisdom is
    To her Simplicity

    Great choice of poet by the way. Emily Dickinson is one of my favourites. You might like to take a look at some of her 2-line poems. It is incredible what she can say in just a few words.

  8. #8
    elvis93 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Poem Analysis

    Thank you very much minnieuk for your advice.
    I'll try to apply all your suggestions for the next analysis. :)

  9. #9
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: Poem Analysis

    Quote Originally Posted by minnieuk View Post
    "Nature" is what we see—
    The Hill—the Afternoon—
    Squirrel—Eclipse—the Bumble bee—
    Nay—Nature is Heaven—
    Nature is what we hear—
    The Bobolink—the Sea—
    Thunder—the Cricket—
    Nay—Nature is Harmony—
    Nature is what we know—
    Yet have no art to say—
    So impotent Our Wisdom is
    To her Simplicity

    Great choice of poet by the way. Emily Dickinson is one of my favourites. You might like to take a look at some of her 2-line poems. It is incredible what she can say in just a few words.
    Good point about the dashes. I wish posters would represent other people's work properly.

    On an unrelated note, I think Dickenson writes rubbish. For example,
    Nature is not what we see, or hear. Nature is not heaven. Nature is not harmonious. Nature is not what we know. Nature is not simple.
    Yes, I understand she was a poet, not a naturalist. But should we let our kids read this?

  10. #10
    freezeframe is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Poem Analysis

    Off-topic:

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    But should we let our kids read this?
    What might happen if we do?

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