Evening Poetry, June 23

A Service of Song

by Emily Dickinson

Some keep the Sabbath going to church;
I keep it staying at home,
With a bobolink for a chorister,
And an orchard for a dome.

Some keep the Sabbath in surplice;
I just wear my wings,
And instead of tolling the bell for church,
Our little sexton sings.

God preaches, — a noted clergyman, —
And the sermon is never long;
So instead of getting to heaven at last,
I’m going all along!

You can find this in the collection Hope Is The Thing With Feathers.

Evening Poetry, June 21

In A Library

by Emily Dickinson

A precious, mouldering pleasure ‘t is
To meet an antique book,
In just the dress his century wore;
A privilege, I think,

His venerable hand to take,
And warming in our own,
A passage back, or two, to make
To times when he was young.

His quaint opinions to inspect,
His knowledge to unfold
On what concerns our mutual mind,
The literature of old;

What interested scholars most,
What competitions ran
When Plato was a certainty.
And Sophocles a man;

When Sappho was a living girl,
And Beatrice wore
The gown that Dante deified.
Facts, centuries before,

He traverses familiar,
As one should come to town
And tell you all your dreams were true;
He lived where dreams were sown.

His presence is enchantment,
You beg him not to go;
Old volumes shake their vellum heads
And tantalize, just so.

You can find this poem and more in the collection Hope Is The Thing With Feathers.

Evening Poetry, June 19

Mother Nature

by Emily Dickinson

Nature, the gentlest mother,

Impatient of no child,

The feeblest or the waywardest,–

Her admonition mild

In forest and the hill

By traveller is heard,

Restraining rampant squirrel

Or too impetuous bird.

How fair her conversation,

A summer afternoon,–

Her household, her assembly;

And when the sun goes down

Her voice among the aisles

Incites the timid prayer

Of the minutest cricket,

The most unworthy flower.

When all the children sleep

She turns as long away

As will suffice to light her lamps;

Then, bending from the sky

With infinite affection

And infinite care,

Her golden finger on her lip,

Wills silence everywhere.

You can find this poem in Hope is the Thing With Feathers.

Evening Poetry, June 8

I Never Saw a Moor

by Emily Dickinson

I never saw a moor,

I never saw the sea;

Yet know I how the heather looks,

And what a wave must be.

I never spoke with God,

Nor visited in heaven;

Yet certain am I of the spot

As if the chart were given.

You can find this poem on Favorite Poems: Old and New.

Evening Poetry, June 1

Morning

by Emily Dickinson

Will there really be a morning?

Is there such a thing as day?

Could I see it from the mountains

If I were as tall as they?

Has it feet like water-lilies?

Has it feathers like a bird?

Is it brought from famous countries

Of which I have never heard?

Oh, some scholar! Oh, some sailor!

Oh, some wise man from the skies!

Please to tell a little pilgrim

Where the place called morning lies.

You can find this poem in Favorite Poems Old and New selected by Helen Ferris.