Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Dickinson's Diction

I've always admired Emily Dickinson for her precise word choice--so evocative, so right. She's a role model for any writer. Here's one that I like for its use of adjectives. It also make me wonder about the world in Dickinson's time. Was it common to stargaze then? Was the sky, without the distraction of endless earthly lights, something spectacular to see? (Even more spectacular than now, I mean). One wonders . . .


Lightly stepped a yellow star
To its lofty place.
Loosed the moon her silver hat
From her lustral face.
All of evening softly lit
As an astral hall.
"Father," I observed to Heaven,
"You are punctual."


Lill said...

I can't speak for Emily Dickinson, but where I live in Maine, the stars are still visible and I'm so glad. When I travel to more populated places and look up to see only a haze from lights, it makes me feel disconnected from the Universe. I think that people looked up more before lights made the stars retreat and before TV and other screens made the Inside more inviting than the Outside.


Julia Buckley said...

Well said, Lill. Now I want to go to Maine. :)

I have been places where the heavens are more evident--but it's not really true around here.