MANUSCRIPTS: The copy reproduced above (Jones Library) was one of four poems which ED enclosed in her first letter to T. W. Higginson postmarked, 15 April 1862. A second fair copy in pencil (Bingham 98-3-33), headed "Emily." and signed "Emily.", is identical in text:
We play at Paste-lt is in the handwriting of 1864, and may have been sent to Emily Fowler Ford.
PUBLICATION: The poem was first published in Atlantic Monthly LXVIII (October 1891), 445, in an article which Higginson wrote dealing with the letters and poems he had received from ED. The same text was followed when the poem was first collected later in the year in Poems (1891), 25, where it is printed without stanza division. The italics are not retained.