Saturday, 7 July 2012

Day 16: Hope

Hope. A fragile feathered concept, but captured so strongly here by Emily Dickinson in this famous and much-loved poem. 

Dickinson once remarked that poetry was 'the whole universe in its divine aspect.'  Surely, there's a touch of the divine here. I always picture huge feathered angel wings when reading the first stanza, even though in the second stanza, it appears to be a bird personifying hope. (No matter. We take from poetry what we will, remember.)

So simple the language, so hard-hitting the message. Hope never stops at all. It sings the tune without the words. Even in the worst storms. In the chillest lands. It is always there. And it doesn't ask anything of us in return. 

It is there within us all, 'the thing with feathers' that will always buoy us. Thank you Emily, for reminding us.

Hope - Emily Dickinson
Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune--without the words,
And never stops at all.

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

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