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"Hope" is the thing with feathers - by Emily Dickinson


'"Hope" is the thing with feathers -' is a poem written by Emily Dickinson. Dickinson personifies "hope" as a bird in this writing. She states that she saw it perched, singing and never stopping. The bird sang the sweeting song, even "in the chilliest land". No matter what happened, the bird never asked anything from her.

This poem is written in three stanzas with four lines in each. The first and third lines contain the longest meters. However, it changes. At least, the first and third lines have seven syllables while at most nine. The second and fourth lines are consistently written in iambic-triameter. Dickinson also rhymes (although many are imperfect) with the structure ABAB.

Johnson number: 254


"Hope" is the thing with feathers -

"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 chilliest land
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

Next: I am alive - I guess
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Literary Movement
19th Century

Animal, Nature, Hope

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