We never know how high we are Till we are called to rise; And then, if we are true to plan, Our statures touch the skies— The Heroism we recite Would be a daily thing, Did not ourselves the Cubits warp For fear to be a King—
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I like to see it lap the Miles (43)
I like to see it lap the Miles, And lick the valleys up, And stop to feed itself at tanks; And then, prodigious, step Around a pile of mountains, And, supercilious, peer In shanties by the sides of roads; And then a quarry pare To fit its sides, and crawl between, Complaining all the while In horrid, hooting stanza; Then chase itself down hill And neigh like Boanerges; Then, punctual as a star, Stop—docile and omnipotent— At its own stable door.
Born in 1830 in Massachusetts, Emily Dickinson lived in almost total physical isolation from the outside world and is now considered, along with Walt Whitman, the founder of a uniquely American poetic voice.