Selected Poems of Emily DickinsonEmily Dickinson
Born in 1830 in Amherst, Massachusetts, to a prominent New England family and educated at Amherst Academy and Mt. Holyoke Female Seminary, Emily Elizabeth Dickinson lived most of her life in seclusion, devoted to writing. She scarcely left home, nor did she have many visitors. Only ten of her poems were published in her lifetime, submitted without her permission by friends. It was only after her death in 1886 that the scope of her work as a poet came to light-over 1,700 poems were discovered in a dresser drawer by her sister, Lavinia. Emily Dickinson's poems reflect her loneliness, as well as her love of nature, the influence of the Metaphysical poets of seventeenth century England, and her strong Puritan religious beliefs. Yet, it is her use of language, form, and the deceptive simplicity of her verse that categorize her as an important force in nineteenth century American letters and, along with Walt Whitman, a founder of a distinctly American voice in modern poetry.