Emily Dickinson's Correspondences
Correspondence with Susan Dickinson

H B131

JL 38


autumn/winter 1850



watermark/embossment: I, Paris, embossed

16 x 10 cm.

FF 186-187. "Susie Gilbert" on verso, as is "Read - No," pencilled by Sue. Sue's sister Mary had died on July 14, 1850. In December, Sue's sister Martha came from Michigan and the Gilbert family was temporarily reconstituted in the home of their eldest sister Harriet in Amherst. The allusion to "Alice" is to Alice Archer of Longfellow's Kavanagh (1849) whose room, as Johnson points out, is "that columbarium lined with warmth, and softness, and silence." Pretending to be coy in her flirtatiousness, Dickinson voices some self-consciousness about her desire to express her affection face-to-face.

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Transcription and commentary copyright 1996 by Martha Nell Smith, all rights reserved
Last updated on April 30, 2001
Maintained by Tanya Clement <tclement@umd.edu>