Now, I don’t like birds. I am afraid of birds – let’s just say a feathery and terrifying time at the Alfred Hitchcock experience at Universal Studios, a lowering attack in Auvillar, France, an aerial splattering in San Francisco, I could go on and on. But I do like feather quill pens (I have a tattoo of one on my wrist), so I’ve always been conflicted about the (somewhat tentative, I admit) connection between feathers and writing.
Then, I reread this poem after years of forgetting it. The first part is well-distributed (oh, the memes!), but it’s the last stanza that gets me every time. It stirs and soars within me, and I’d love to hear what it means to you. And as always, if you have suggestions for poems or poets to spotlight here just let us know in the comments! Enjoy ~
“Hope” is the thing with feathers – (314)
BY EMILY DICKINSON
“Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –
And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
And sore must be the storm –
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm –
I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the strangest Sea –
Yet – never – in Extremity,
It asked a crumb – of me.