Favourite Poets: Emily Dickinson, This World Is Not Conclusion

A Species stands beyond –
Invisible, as Music –
But positive, as Sound –
It beckons, and it baffles –
Philosophy, don’t know –
And through a Riddle, at the last –
Sagacity, must go –
To guess it, puzzles scholars –
To gain it, Men have borne
Contempt of Generations
And Crucifixion, shown –
Faith slips – and laughs, and rallies –
Blushes, if any see –
Plucks at a twig of Evidence –
And asks a Vane, the way –
Much Gesture, from the Pulpit –
Strong Hallelujahs roll –
Narcotics cannot still the Tooth
That nibbles at the soul –

Dickinson’s poems so often start out with a structure that always reminds me of The Scientific Method. Now, hear me out, for those of you who don’t think art and science should mix. She starts her poems with a statement – think of this as a hypothesis, then uses the poem to research her ideas and either prove or disprove it. Maybe that’s a huge reach; that’s just what has come to me looking at this one. ‘There’s more to life than this, there’s more to this world than that we can see.’ I like this idea a lot. Beautifully done.

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