Many people don’t know this about Emily Dickinson, but she composed roughly 1800 poems that almost nobody in the world knew about … her poetic life was essentially a secret, one that was lived- literally!- in solitude. This means, for me at any rate, that she loved poetry for poetry’s sake- and not for accolade, not for prestige, nor for honor, nor reputation or any of that! She, above any one I’ve come to know or study thus far, is what a poet ought to be.
Now anyone who knows me knows that Milton is my favorite poet, but I feel the truth of this statement deep, deep in my heart: I know of no other poet who is more authentic and more unique than Emily Dickinson. She is to poetry what Kierkegaard is to existentialism. I really, really love her and her works!
Happy birthday, Dickinson …
Poem 214: I Taste a Liquor Never Brewed
I taste a liquor never brewed –
From Tankards scooped in Pearl –
Not all the Frankfort Berries
Yield such an Alcohol!
Inebriate of air – am I –
And Debauchee of Dew –
Reeling – thro' endless summer days –
From inns of molten Blue –
When "Landlords" turn the drunken Bee
Out of the Foxglove's door –
When Butterflies – renounce their "drams" –
I shall but drink the more!
Till Seraphs swing their snowy Hats –
And Saints – to windows run –
To see the Tippler
Leaning against the – Sun!