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To Make a Prairie

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)


Emily Dickinson died on May 14, 1886. She had once written that "Nature is a Haunted House -- but Art -- a House that tries to be haunted." The remark illustrates her trait of yearning elusiveness, but she had stronger, sterner qualities, too: "Every day life feels mightier, and what we have the power to be, more stupendous." Like her father, Edward Dickinson, lawyer, congressman, and long-time treasurer of Amherst College, Emily also had the capacity to be "pure and terrible" of heart.
To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee,
One clover, and a bee,
And revery.
The revery alone will do,
If bees are few.

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