Emily, We Sympathize

Cold, snowy, windy, bleak! No thaw to break it up. Little sun. Plows roaring in the night. Throw down a bale of hay, schlep it along to the sheep pen, stuff hay in the feeder, haul some firewood, that’s it, that’s the day’s work. That’s the winter of 10/11 as seen on a dank early March day. Think Emily Dickinson, the recluse huddled alone by the fireplace in 19th Century Amherst, Mass., creating a remarkable body of work, wonderful poetry that few people even knew about until after she was dead and gone.

“There’s a certain slant of light,
On winter afternoons,
That oppresses, like the weight
Of cathedral tunes.”

How very bleak. How very sad. Where the hell is spring?

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