Three poems about the end of summer

By Emily Dickinson

  • September’s Baccalaureate
  • A combination is
  • Of Crickets — Crows — and Retrospects
  • And a dissembling Breeze
  • That hints without assuming —
  • An Innuendo sear
  • That makes the Heart put up its Fun
  • And turn Philosopher.
  • (#1270)

  • There comes a warning like a spy
  • A shorter breath of Day
  • A stealing that is not a stealth
  • And Summers are away —
  • (#1536)

  • As imperceptibly as Grief
  • The Summer lapsed away —
  • Too imperceptible at last
  • To seem like Perfidy —
  • A Quietness distilled
  • As Twilight long begun,
  • Or Nature spending with herself
  • Sequestered Afternoon —
  • The Dusk drew earlier in —
  • The Morning foreign shone —
  • A courteous, yet harrowing Grace,
  • As Guest, that would be gone —
  • And thus, without a Wing
  • Or service of a Keel
  • Our Summer made her light escape
  • Into the Beautiful.
  • (#1540)

Emily Elizabeth Dickinson (1830–1886) was an American poet and one of the most original poets in literary history. Combining the cadences of the Protestant hymnals that were part of her Christian upbringing with original, often startling, diction, her poems are brief but powerful, often accompanied by a surprising and sometimes cryptic juxtaposition of images and innovations in poetic form, such as her use of slant rhyme. Not wholly appreciated by her contemporaries, Dickinson remained largely unnoticed until after her death in 1886, and it wasn’t until 1955 that a critical edition of her work was published by literary scholar Thomas H. Johnson.

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