Tag Archives: Emily Dickinson

‘If you were coming in the fall’

Women at the Sea. Jan Toorop. 1891.
Women at the Sea. Jan Toorop. 1891.

Emily Dickinson


If you were coming in the fall,

I’d brush the summer by

With half a smile and half a spurn,

As housewives do a fly.


If I could see you in a year,

I’d wind the months in balls,

And put them each in separate drawers,

Until their time befalls.


If only centuries delayed,

I’d count them on my hand,

Subtracting till my fingers dropped

Into Van Diemens land.


If certain, when this life was out,

That yours and mine should be,

I’d toss it yonder like a rind,

And taste eternity.


But now, all ignorant of the length

Of time’s uncertain wing,

It goads me, like the goblin bee,

That will not state its sting.

‘I Like to See It Lap the Miles’

The Lackawanna Valley. George Inness. 1855.


Emily Dickinson


I like to see it  lap the miles,

And lick the valleys up,

And stop to feed itself at tanks;

And then, prodigious, step


Around a pile of mountains,

And, supercilious, peer

In shanties by the sides of roads;

And then a quarry pare


To fit its sides, and crawl between,

Complaining all the while

In horrid, hooting stanza;

Then chase itself down hill.


And neigh like Boanerges;

Then, punctual as a star,

Stop—docile and omnipotent—

At its own stable door.