poems sent from dickinson to higginson

Thomas Johnson's Note on Poem 1256

MANUSCRIPT: There are two, both written about 1873. The fair copy reproduced above (BPL Higg 38) was sent to T. W. Higginson, enclosed either with the card (BPL Higg 92) reading: "Will you instruct me then no more?" or the card (BPL Higg 92a) reading: "Could you teach me now?" It is a redaction of the semifinal draft in packet 93-10 (Bingham):

Not any higher stands the Grave
For Heroes than for Men.
Not any nearer for the Child Than numb Three score and Ten-

This latest Castle equal holds
The Beggar and his Queen -
Propitiate this Democrat
A Summer's Afternoon!

5. Castle] Leisure     5. holds] lulls
ED underlined both suggested changes in pencil and adopted them in the fair copy to Higginson.

PUBLICATION: Poems (1896), 154. The text follows that of the fair copy, with one line altered:

8] By summer's gracious mien.
The same text was reproduced when the poem was reissued in CP (1924). Line 8 was correctly restored in the Centenary edition (1930) and later collections.

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Commentary copyright 1998 by Martha Nell Smith, all rights reserved
Maintained by Lara Vetter <lv26@umail.umd.edu>
Last updated on September 10, 1998