Month: November 2016

Emily Dickinson, South Winds Jostle Them—, and Cashmere: Attempting Connection Through Nature

Here is a link to a short article, “Emily Dickinson, SOUTH WINDS JOSTLE THEM—, and Cashmere: Attempting Connection Through Nature,” I recently had published by The Explicator (this hyperlink should provide access to the full article):

The essay is a close reading of the Emily Dickinson poem, “South Winds Jostle Them-,” and explores how Dickinson uses elements of nature to connect her local New England spaces with foreign places. I’ve also written a bit about this here.

I’m happy for this piece to see the light of day right now for two reasons:

  1. It was part of a longer article that I never really figured out. I might return to it someday, but for now, it feels nice to present a bit of it to the world and leave the rest to rest.
  2. Boy, this has been rough week and a half. I, like many people, are trying to figure out how to be active in our new political climate. My mom said to me that everyone needs to use their power to fight in their own ways. What is my power? Well, it is writing. However, it can feel like the kind of writing I do is not immediate enough. I’m not a reporter, and I’m not Harriet Beecher Stowe. I’m still figuring out what this all means to me as a scholar, but in the meantime, imagining connection across spaces isn’t a bad place to start. If Dickinson’s little butterflies have the strength to commune with the world, surely I can imagine, and work toward, an America that is less awful not because people have been forced to be quiet about their beliefs but because connection and knowledge have changed people.