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A narrow Fellow in the Grass by Emily Dickinson


"A narrow Fellow in the Grass" is a poem written by Emily Dickinson. It was originally published anonymously in the Springfield Republican (which makes it one of the very few peoples which were published during her lifetime) under the title "The Snake, because this poem examines the creature.

This poem is written as six stanzas with four lines in each. Dickinson uses imperfect rhymes, soft rhymes, and perfect rhymes in each of the stanzas to rhyme the second with fourth lines. Even though "rides" and "is" is not a perfect rhyme, it is still technically what is called an "imperfect rhyme" in literature since it is close but not exact. The same can be said about stanza two with "seen" and "on" and "sun and "gone" in stanza four.

Johnson number: 986


A narrow Fellow in the Grass

A narrow fellow in the grass
Occasionally rides;
You may have met him,--did you not,
His notice sudden is.

The grass divides as with a comb,
A spotted shaft is seen;
And then it closes at your feet
And opens further on.

He likes a boggy acre,
A floor too cool for corn.
Yet when a child, and barefoot,
I more than once, at morn,

Have passed, I thought, a whip-lash
Unbraiding in the sun,--
When, stooping to secure it,
It wrinkled, and was gone.

Several of nature's people
I know, and they know me;
I feel for them a transport
Of cordiality;

But never met this fellow,
Attended or alone,
Without a tighter breathing,
And zero at the bone.

Written in 1865.

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Literary Movement
19th Century

Animal, Nature

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