Because I Could Not Stop For Death Analysis Essay

Because I Could Not Stop for Death Analysis Essay

1972 WordsAug 12th, 20108 Pages

“Because I Could Not Stop For Death” Analysis

The poem, “Because I Could Not Stop For Death,” by Emily Dickinson

presents captivating themes on the cycle of life, time, and death. The first two lines,

“Because I could not stop for death - / He kindly stopped for me – “ (Dickinson 679;

Stanza 1, Line 1 & 2), capture the poem’s central theme, but the interpretations of

that theme vary widely. This variation would have to do with how one would

interpret Death. The three varied elements that are used to describe the theme are

the civil character of Death, how Death has to do with the eternal life and, and

sailing through time in order to look back at seeing the positives of living every day

life. One would…show more content…

Some examples of images that she sees while she is on her journey with Death are:

children playing, wheat growing, and the sun setting. The children that she sees

playing “in the Ring” have a major influence of human beings because they

symbolize eternity. The wheat that grows symbolizes the natural world as she

currently views it. However, as time changes, the grain appears to be “gazing” at her,

or observing her with much interest. The “setting sun” represents the life clock,

which is also known as the thing that humans measure as the amount of time left to

live on earth. As time passes by, she passes with Death into another phase or

dimension. This all ties into what the young woman strives to do. As she journey’s

with Death, she relates everything that she does in every day living as something

she would still see when she is already dead. She tries to repress the stress of living,

but tries to think about it in a positive way. She temporarily loses herself in a

wonderland, where she imagines that everything she sees when she travels with

Death is a pleasant experience. Afterwards, she then tries to think positively of what

she can do to feel the same way when she is alive. As this happens, she spots

significant symbols that represent her life.

In the fifth stanza, the narrative figure uses euphemism as a way to

symbolize the mysterious places that she encounters at her time of

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Essay about Because I could not stop for Death, by Emily Dickinson

1137 Words5 Pages

‘Because I could not stop for Death—,’ A Poem of Both Marriage and Death

When thinking of both marriage and death, the word “eternity” comes to mind. Marriage is looked at as a symbol of eternal love, and death is looked at as a state of eternal rest. Also, Christians consider life after death as an eternal state. In “Because I could not stop for Death—,” Emily Dickinson portrays death by describing an eternal marriage.

On the literal level, the speaker remembers a time where she was carried off and eloped with a man called Death and his partner in crime, Immortality. Not realizing that going with Death meant that she would have to leave this world and live with him in his house forever, she shows herself as being immature at…show more content…

It was “A Swelling of the Ground--” and “ The roof was barely visible—“. The turning point of the poem was a flashback, when she says, “ Since then—‘tis Centuries—and yet/Feels shorter than the Day/I first surmised the Horses’ Heads/Were toward Eternity—“(21-24). This flashback lets the reader know that she is looking back on that day almost as if she is sad. Centuries have passed, yet that day seems longer than any time that has passed.

This poem clearly functions as an allegory. On a symbolic level, it was easy to grasp that this poem was a recollection of the speaker’s death. Dickinson describes this death so well it is almost as if she is writing about her own death. The main clue that this was a poem of death was that she got in a carriage with two guys whose names just happened to be Death and Immortality. Death symbolizes the passing away of the body, and Immortality represents the Christian belief that the body dies but the soul is immortal.

When the speaker states, “Because I could not stop for Death—/He kindly stopped for me—,” she implies that most people do not stop to think about their death. People go on with their busy lives and do not talk or think about death because they are afraid of it. So Death must stop and “kindly” ask people into his carriage. After she went into his carriage, Dickinson goes on to portray what the speaker sees as she is dying. Contrary to the speaker’s busy and fast life, line five

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