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A Quartet of Emily Dickinson Poems

Emily Dickinsons Poems

A Quartet of Emily Dickinson Poems

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Did you know Kathleen is also a children’s picture book author, you can find out more about her books at www.kathleenpelley.com

A Quartet of Emily Dickinson Poems

Thanksgiving November 23, 2023

Episode 248

Do you like to take walks in the countryside to admire the beauty of nature all around you?  What do you enjoy most – seeing an amazing sunset of the sky streaked with shades of rose and gold and violet -or maybe listening to the soothing sound of a babbling stream? 

Hello everyone, I’m Kathleen Pelley.  Welcome to Journey with Story.  Today is a wonderful American holiday called Thanksgiving – a time for us all to give thanks for the many, many gifts in our lives and one of those gifts, I think, is this amazing world we live in that sometimes we take for granted.  Today, I am going to share four poems by a great American poet, Emily Dickinson, whose poems celebrate the beauty and magic of our everyday world.  She makes the ordinary appear extraordinary and sees miracles everywhere.  Three of these poems pose a little riddle for you that you should be able to solve just by listening to the words and what they describe. 

Before I begin- a big thanks to all of YOU our wonderful listeners – I am very grateful and thankful to you for your encouragement and support. 

Let’s take a journey with a quartet of Emily Dickinson’s poems.  

The first is -The moon was but a chin of gold  

The Moon was but a Chin of Gold  

A Night or two ago—  

And now she turns Her perfect Face  

Upon the World below—  

 

Her Forehead is of Amplest Blonde—  

Her Cheek—like beryl stone 

Her Eye unto the Summer Dew  

The likest I have known—  

 

Her Lips of Amber never part—  

But what must be the smile  

Upon Her Friend she could confer  

Were such Her Silver Will—  

 

And what a privilege to be  

But the remotest Star—  

For Certainty She take Her Way  

Beside Your Palace Door—  

 

Her Bonnet is the Firmament—  

The Universe—Her Shoe—  

The Stars—the Trinkets at Her Belt—  

Her Dimities—of Blue— 

And now a riddle poem 

 

A fuzzy fellow, without feet, 

Yet doth exceeding run! 

Of velvet, is his Countenance, 

And his Complexion, dun! 

 

Sometime, he dwelleth in the grass! 

Sometime, upon a bough, 

From which he doth descend in plush 

Upon the Passer-by! 

 

All this in summer – 

But when winds alarm the Forest Folk, 

He taketh Damask Residence – 

And struts in sewing silk! 

 

Then, finer than a Lady, 

Emerges in the spring! 

A Feather on each shoulder! 

You’d scarce recognize him! 

 

Did you guess what she is describing here?  Yes, it’s a caterpillar who becomes a butterfly. 

 

 

And another riddle poem 

It sifts from Leaden Sieves – 

It powders all the Wood. 

It fills with Alabaster Wool 

The Wrinkles of the Road – 

 

It makes an even Face 

Of Mountain, and of Plain – 

Unbroken Forehead from the East 

Unto the East again – 

 

It reaches to the Fence – 

It wraps it Rail by Rail 

Till it is lost in Fleeces – 

It deals Celestial Vail 

 

To Stump, and Stack – and Stem – 

A Summer’s empty Room – 

Acres of Joints, where Harvests were, 

Recordless, but for them – 

 

It Ruffles Wrists of Posts 

As Ankles of a Queen – 

Then stills it’s Artisans – like Ghosts – 

Denying they have been – 

 

Did you guess what this is? Yes – it is snow 

 

And here is our last riddle poem 

 

A narrow Fellow in the Grass 

Occasionally rides – 

You may have met him? Did you not 

His notice instant is – 

 

The Grass divides as with a Comb, 

A spotted Shaft is seen, 

And then it closes at your Feet 

And opens further on – 

 

He likes a Boggy Acre –   

A Floor too cool for Corn – 

But when a Boy and Barefoot 

I more than once at Noon 

 

Have passed I thought a Whip Lash 

Unbraiding in the Sun 

When stooping to secure it 

It wrinkled And was gone – 

 

Several of Nature’s People 

I know, and they know me 

I feel for them a transport 

Of Cordiality 

 

But never met this Fellow 

Attended or alone 

Without a tighter Breathing 

And Zero at the Bone. 

 

Did you get it?  Yes of course, it’s a snake! 

Which one of these poems was your favorite.  If you could write a poem about anything in our world that you are most grateful for, what would that be about?  And don’t forget if any of these poems painted pictures in your mind do get busy drawing and send your creation to us at www.journeywithstory.com – click on contact us – fill in the form and attach your drawing. 

Happy Thanksgiving to all of us no matter where we are – let’s take a moment to give thanks for the gift of each other and the gift of this beautiful world we all live in;. 

Cheerio then, join me next time for Journey with Story 

And can you guess what this is – not a creature – but something that people often see around this time of year….

It sifts from leaden sieves 

It powders all the wood 

And finally – see if you can guess what this creature is 

A narrow fellow in the grass Occasionally rides 

I wonder if some of these poems might prompt you to make up your own riddle poem about some thing or someone that you can describe in words and then let people guess what you are describing.  Hope that all of us around the world,  no matter where we are, can find some things about this wonderful world of ours to be grateful for today.  And of course, all of us here at JWS are very grateful to all of you our wonderful LISTENERS for your support and encouragement. 

Happy Thanksgiving. 

Cheerio then, join me next time for Journey with Story 

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