Monday, November 1, 2010

Emily Dickinson for Halloween: I Heard a Fly Buzz

I hope you all had a fun Halloween! We live in a very Halloween-happy neighborhood and had hundreds of trick or treaters. The strangest costume was probably the ten year old boy dressed as "a kissing booth." Hey, whatever works.

Too bad I didn't see these cool poet costume ideas *before* the holiday. I especially like the "extra credit" add-ons. For instance, as part of the Emily Dickinson costume, they suggest you hand out plastic flies in honor of her poem #465. Or for William Carlos Williams, hand out candy from a red wheelbarrow. Nice.

I heard a fly buzz (465)
by Emily Dickinson

I heard a Fly buzz – when I died –
The Stillness in the Room
Was like the Stillness in the Air –
Between the Heaves of Storm –

The Eyes around – had wrung them dry –
And Breaths were gathering firm
For that last Onset – when the King
Be witnessed – in the Room –

I willed my Keepsakes – Signed away
What portions of me be
Assignable – and then it was
There interposed a Fly –

With Blue – uncertain stumbling Buzz –
Between the light – and me –
And then the Windows failed – and then
I could not see to see –

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