Emily Dickinson – Rebel

Much Madness is divinest Sense

Much Madness is divinest Sense –
To a discerning Eye –
Much Sense – the starkest Madness –
’Tis the Majority
In this, as all, prevail –
Assent – and you are sane –
Demur – you’re straightway dangerous –
And handled with a Chain –
This poem by Dickinson (1830-1886) shows her rebel self.  She didn’t hold with ‘going along with the crowd’ or social convention, generally, just for the sake of comfortability.  In fact, she was a recluse.  I wish I could be a recluse, but I have to go out into the world every day to work.  Work gives me the independence I need so I’m not a burden on others.
In 1847, in her last year of schooling, Dickinson was the only student who didn’t stand up when the class was asked ‘who wants to be Christians.’  This willful act also shows her rebel self.  Here is the first stanza of one of her poems which well-shows her thought about God.
 Nature and God — I neither knew
Yet Both so well knew me
They startled, like Executors
Of My identity.
She was taken aback by the majesty of creation.
I like the poetry of Emily Dickinson and through it, I like her, though she’s dead.  There is a fine biographical essay on her at the poetry foundation.


About paulyr2

Single male, b. 1955, U.S. citizen, Italian, Christian, B.A. (Political Science) Seton Hall Univ., M.T.S. (Theological Studies) Drew Univ.
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