“Emily Dick”

as she sometimes loved to sign her name. A heterodox creature, an eccentric. Inebriating, if you get yourself hit; total. So that you have almost the impression that the word has no more reason to express itself further than Emily, because she has observed everything and communicated everything. Impression of a barrier, Miss Dickinson, of an extreme limit, of the last folly permitted before everything sank.

I have no intention, here, neither to draft a short guide to the New England poetess nor to imprison her lines in a critical speech. I only wish to propose some fragments of her exquisite naturalistic sensitivity in order to participate, with her and through her, in the hidden throb of things.

Participation which we too often omit to sink in everyday prosaicness while we should learn to re-emerge from it every time in a purifying fugue towards extension and perpetuity:


Inebriate of Air – am I –
And Debauchee of Dew –
Reeling – thro endless summer days –
From inns of Molten Blue –


While we should learn how not silence requests of love:


If I shouldn’t be alive
When the Robins come,
Give the one in Red Cravat,
A Memorial crumb!


and of sun:


Bring me the sunset in a cup


and of minutiae:


Write me… how many trips
The Tortoise makes


While we should shatter obviousness in order to re-create small and industrious worlds:


Bright Flowers slit a Calyx
And soared upon a Stem
Like Hindered Flags –
Sweet hoistered
With Spices – in the Hem –




The Grass… has… Butterflies to broad
And Bees to entertain…




A Spider sewed at Night
Without a Light
Upon an Arc of White


Operations – these which we should learn – that do not burn themselves out, but that mould us into a new way of feeling and that push us towards an availability to perceive the matters of the universe, to love them by making them deeply ours. And it is through this very brightness we must need ourselves in order to substitute the responsibility, the fight, the “strength of loving” to the aboulia.

As a conclusion let’s read Emily once again and feel at one with her meditation in order to be able to “set out leaving a clean place” behind us:


If I can stop one Heart from breaking
I shall not live in vain
If I can ease one Life the Aching
Or cool one Pain
Or help one fainting Robin
Unto his Nest again
I shall not live in vain.