Emily Dickinson Quotes (119) Spiritual Sayings

About the Author: Emily Elizabeth Dickinson (December 10, 1830 – May 15, 1886) was an American poet. Born in Amherst, Massachusetts, to a successful family with strong community ties, she lived a mostly introverted and reclusive life. While Dickinson was a prolific private poet, fewer than a dozen of her nearly eighteen hundred poems were published during her lifetime. The work that was published during her lifetime was usually altered significantly by the publishers to fit the conventional poetic rules of the time. Many of her poems deal with themes of death and immortality, two recurring topics in letters to her friends. Although most of her acquaintances were probably aware of Dickinson's writing, it was not until after her death in 1886—when Lavinia, Emily's younger sister, discovered her cache of poems—that the breadth of Dickinson's work became apparent. Her first collection of poetry was published in 1890 by personal acquaintances Thomas Wentworth Higginson and Mabel Loomis Todd, both of whom heavily edited the content. A complete and mostly unaltered collection of her poetry became available for the first time in 1955 when The Poems of Emily Dickinson was published by scholar Thomas H. Johnson. Despite some unfavorable reviews and some skepticism during the late 19th and early 20th century as to Dickinson's literary prowess, she is now almost universally considered to be one of the most important American poets.  See website for more info - http://www.poets.org/poet.php/prmPID/155


“Hope is the thing with feathers. That perches in the soul.And sings the tune without the words. And never stops at all.”
― Emily Dickinson

“If I can stop one heart from breaking, I shall not live in vain.”
― Emily Dickinson

“That it will never come again is what makes life so sweet.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Not knowing when the dawn will come
I open every door.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“Morning without you is a dwindled dawn.”
― Emily Dickinson

“If I read a book and it makes my whole body so cold no fire can warm me, I know that is poetry. If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry. These are the only ways I know it. Is there any other way?”
― Emily Dickinson, Selected Letters

“Forever is composed of nows.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Saying nothing sometimes says the most.”
― Emily Dickinson

“I dwell in possibility…”
― Emily Dickinson

“This is my letter to the world
That never wrote to me”
― Emily Dickinson

“To live is so startling it leaves little time for anything else.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Beauty is not caused. It is.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Dogs are better than human beings because they know but do not tell.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Nature is a haunted house--but Art--is a house that tries to be haunted.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“Pardon My Sanity In A World Insane”
― Emily Dickinson

“I'm Nobody! Who are you?
Are you – Nobody – too?
Then there's a pair of us?
Don't tell! they'd advertise – you know!

How dreary – to be – Somebody!
How public – like a Frog –
To tell one's name – the livelong June –
To an admiring Bog!”
― Emily Dickinson

“A word is dead when it's been said, some say. I say it just begins to live that day.”
― Emily Dickinson

“The soul should always stand ajar, ready to welcome the ecstatic experience.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Bring me the sunset in a cup.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Because I could not stop for Death –
He kindly stopped for me –
The Carriage held but just Ourselves –
And Immortality.”
― Emily Dickinson

“There is no Frigate like a book
To take us Lands away,
Nor any Coursers like a Page
Of prancing Poetry...”
― Emily Dickinson

“How happy is the little stone
That rambles in the road alone,
And doesn't care about careers,
And exigencies never fears;
Whose coat of elemental brown
A passing universe put on;
And independent as the sun,
Associates or glows alone,
Fulfilling absolute decree
In casual simplicity.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Truth is so rare, it is delightful to tell it.”
― Emily Dickinson

“The dearest ones of time, the strongest friends of the soul--BOOKS.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Hold dear to your parents for it is a scary and confusing world without them.”
― Emily Dickinson

“I don't profess to be profound; but I do lay claim to common sense.”
― Emily Dickinson

“PHOSPHORESCENCE. Now there's a word to lift your hat to... to find that phosphorescence, that light within, that's the genius behind poetry.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Heart, we will forget him,
You and I, tonight!
You must forget the warmth he gave,
I will forget the light.”
― Emily Dickinson

“We turn not older with years but newer every day.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Till I loved I never lived.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Life is a spell so exquisite that everything conspires to break it.”
― Emily Dickinson

“I felt it shelter to speak to you.”
― Emily Dickinson

“I know nothing in the world that has as much power as a word. Sometimes I write one, and I look at it, until it begins to shine.”
― Emily Dickinson

“That I shall love always,
I argue thee
that love is life,
and life hath immortality”
― Emily Dickinson

“We never know how high we are till we are called to rise. Then if we are true to form our statures touch the skies.”
― Emily Dickinson, Collected Poems of Emily Dickinson

“The lovely flowers
embarrass me.
They make me regret
I am not a bee...”
― Emily Dickinson

“Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion; it is not the expression of personality but an escape from personality. But, of course, only those who have personality and emotion know what it means to want to escape from these.”
― Emily Dickinson

“They might not need me; but they might.
I'll let my head be just in sight;
A smile as small as mine might be
Precisely their necessity.”
― Emily Dickinson

“We outgrow love like other things and put it in a drawer, till it an antique fashion shows like costumes grandsires wore.”
― Emily Dickinson

“But a Book is only the Heart's Portrait- every Page a Pulse.”
― Emily Dickinson

“One need not be a chamber to be haunted.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“Parting is all we know of Heaven,
and all we need of Hell.”
― Emily Dickinson

“An ear can break a human heart
As quickly as a spear,
We wish the ear had not a heart
So dangerously near.”
― Emily Dickinson

“I died for beauty but was scarce
Adjusted in the tomb,
When one who died for truth was lain
In an adjoining room.

He questioned softly why I failed?
"For beauty," I replied.
"And I for truth, the two are one;
We brethren are," he said.

And so, as kinsmen met a night,
We talked between the rooms,
Until the moss had reached our lips,
And covered up our names.”
― Emily Dickinson

“A great hope fell
You heard no noise
The ruin was within.”
― Emily Dickinson

“How do most people live without any thought? There are many people in the world,--you must have noticed them in the street,--how do they live? How do they get strength to put on their clothes in the morning?”
― Emily Dickinson

“Judge tenderly of me.”
― Emily Dickinson

“I tasted life.”
― Emily Dickinson

“A little Madness in the Spring Is wholesome even for the King.”
― Emily Dickinson

“If you were coming in the fall,
I'd brush the summer by,
With half a smile and half a spurn,
As housewives do a fly.

If I could see you in a year,
I'd wind the months in balls,
And put them each in separate drawers,
Until their time befalls.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“Love is anterior to life, posterior to death, initial of creation, and the exponent of breath.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chilliest land
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“My love for those I love -- not many -- not very many, but don't I love them so?”
― Emily Dickinson

“The Heart wants what it wants - or else it does not care”
― Emily Dickinson

“Behavior is what a man does, not what he thinks, feels, or believes.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Write me of hope and love, and hearts that endured.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Unable are the loved to die. For love is immortality.”
― Emily Dickinson

“A wounded dear leaps the highest”
― Emily Dickinson

“Tell all the Truth but tell it slant--
Success in Cirrcuit lies
Too bright for our infirm Delight
The Truth's superb surprise

As Lightening to the Children eased
With explanation kind
The Truth must dazzle gradually
Or every man be blind--”
― Emily Dickinson

“Those who have not found the heaven below,
will fail of it above.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Collected Poems of Emily Dickinson

“I can wade Grief --
Whole Pools of it --
I'm used to that --
But the least push of Joy
Breaks up my feet --
And I tip -- drunken --
Let no Pebble -- smile --
'Twas the New Liquor --
That was all!”
― Emily Dickinson, Final Harvest: Poems

“He ate and drank the precious words,
His spirit grew robust;
He knew no more that he was poor,
Nor that his frame was dust.
He danced along the dingy days,
And this bequest of wings
Was but a book. What liberty
A loosened spirit brings!”
― Emily Dickinson

“Tis not that dieing hurts us so- tis living- hurts us more.”
― Emily Dickinson

“My friends are my estate.”
― Emily Dickinson

“She died--this was the way she died;
And when her breath was done,
Took up her simple wardrobe
And started for the sun.
Her little figure at the gate
The angels must have spied,
Since I could never find her
Upon the mortal side.”
― Emily Dickinson, Selected Poems

“I must go in, the fog is rising.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Faith is a fine invention
When gentlemen can see,
But microscopes are prudent
In an emergency.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“They say that God is everywhere and yet we always think of him as somewhat of a recluse.”
― Emily Dickinson

“The possible's slow fuse is lit by the Imagination.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Dying is a wild night and a new road.”
― Emily Dickinson

“The brain is wider than the sky,
For, put them side by side,
The one the other will include
With ease, and you beside.”
― Emily Dickinson

“My best Acquaintances are those
With Whom I spoke no Word”
― Emily Dickinson

“There's a certain slant of light,
On winter afternoons,
That oppresses, like the weight
Of cathedral tunes.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Much Madness is divinest Sense --
To a discerning Eye --
Much Sense -- the starkest Madness --
'Tis the Majority
In this, as All, prevail --
Assent -- and you are sane --
Demur -- you're straightway dangerous --
And handled with a Chain --”
― Emily Dickinson

“I cannot live with you,
It would be life,
And life is over there
Behind the shelf ”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“Love is its own rescue; for we, at our supremest, are but its trembling emblems.”
― Emily Dickinson

“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.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“That love is all there is, Is all we know of love.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Till it has loved, no man or woman can become itself.”
― Emily Dickinson

“People need hard times and oppression to develop psychic muscles.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Anger as soon as fed is dead-
'Tis starving makes it fat. ”
― Emily Dickinson, Selected Poems

“I'll tell you how the sun rose, a ribbon at a time.
The steeples swam in amethyst,
The news like squirrels ran.
The hills untied their bonnets,
The bobolinks begun.
Then I said softly to myself,
"That must have been the sun!”
― Emily Dickinson

“They say that 'home is where the heart is.' I think it is where the house is, and the adjacent buildings.”
― Emily Dickinson

“in this short life
that only lasts ah hour
how much-how little-is
within our power.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Find ecstasy in life; the mere sense of living is joy enough.”
― Emily Dickinson

“If I can stop one heart from breaking…”
Emily Dickinson

If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.”
― Emily Dickinson

“My life closed twice before its close;
It yet remains to see
If Immortality unveil
A third event to me,
So huge, so hopeless to conceive,
As these that twice befell.
Parting is all we know of heaven,
And all we need of hell.”
― Emily Dickinson, Dickinson: Poems

“I felt a Cleaving in my Mind-
As if my Brain had split-
I tried to match it- Seam by Seam-
But could not make it fit.”
― Emily Dickinson

"Your Brain is wider than the sky"
― Emily Dickinson

“Luck is not chance, it's toil; fortune's expensive smile is earned.”
― Emily Dickinson

“I hope you love birds too. It is economical. It saves going to heaven.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Conventionality is not morality. Self-righteousness is not religion. Espousing the former is not defending the latter.”
― Emily Dickinson

“To see her is a picture-
To hear her is a tune-
To know her an Intemperance
As innocent as June-
To know her not-Affliction-
To own her for a Friend
A warmth as near as if the the Sun
Were shining in your Hand.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson

“The Truth must dazzle gradually or every man be blind.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Opinion is a fitting thing but truth outlasts the sun - if then we cannot own them both, possess the oldest one.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Old age comes on suddenly, and not gradually as is thought.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Whenever a thing is done for the first time, it releases a little demon.”
― Emily Dickinson

“She dealt her pretty words like Blades --
How glittering they shone --
And every One unbared a Nerve
Or wantoned with a Bone --

She never deemed -- she hurt --
That -- is not Steel's Affair --
A vulgar grimace in the Flesh --
How ill the Creatures bear --

To Ache is human -- not polite --
The Film upon the eye
Mortality's old Custom --
Just locking up -- to Die.”
― Emily Dickinson

“There is no frigate like a book
To take us lands away,
Nor any coursers like a page
Of prancing poetry.
This traverse may the poorest take
Without oppress of toll;
How frugal is the chariot
That bears a human soul!”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“To be alive──is Power.”
― Emily Dickinson, The Complete Poems

“I lost a world the other day. Has anybody found? You'll know it by the rows of stars around it's forehead bound. A rich man might not notice it; yet to my frugal eye of more esteem than ducats. Oh! Find it, sir, for me!”
― Emily Dickinson, Final Harvest: Poems

“How strange that nature does not knock, and yet does not intrude!”
― Emily Dickinson

“I am out with lanterns, looking for myself.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Wild Nights – Wild Nights!
Were I with thee
Wild Nights should be
Our luxury!

Futile – the winds –
To a heart in port –
Done with the compass –
Done with the chart!

Rowing in Eden –
Ah, the sea!
Might I moor – Tonight –
In thee!”
― Emily Dickinson, Selected Poems

“You ask of my companions. Hills, sir, and the sundown, and a dog as large as myself.”
― Emily Dickinson

“The truth I do not dare to know I muffle with a jest.”
― Emily Dickinson

“I had been hungry all the years-
My noon had come, to dine-
I, trembling, drew the table near
And touched the curious wine.

'Twas this on tables I had seen
When turning, hungry, lone,
I looked in windows, for the wealth
I could not hope to own.

I did not know the ample bread,
'Twas so unlike the crumb
The birds and I had often shared
In Nature's diningroom.

The plenty hurt me, 'twas so new,--
Myself felt ill and odd,
As berry of a mountain bush
Transplanted to the road.

Nor was I hungry; so I found
That hunger was a way
Of persons outside windows,
The entering takes away.”
― Emily Dickinson, I'm Nobody! Who Are You?

“Till I loved I never liked enough.”
― Emily Dickinson

“To hope means to be ready at every moment for that which is not yet born, and yet not become desperate if there is no birth in our lifetime.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Faith—is the Pierless Bridge
Supporting what We see
Unto the Scene that We do not—
Too slender for the eye
It bears the Soul as bold
As it were rocked in Steel
With Arms of Steel at either side—
It joins—behind the Veil
To what, could We presume
The Bridge would cease to be
To Our far, vacillating Feet
A first Necessity.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Fame is a fickle food upon a shifting plate. ”
― Emily Dickinson

“A soft Sea washed around the House
A Sea of Summer Air
And rose and fell the magic Planks
That sailed without a care —
For Captain was the Butterfly
For Helmsman was the Bee
And an entire universe
For the delighted crew.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Love is like the wild rose-briar;
Friendship like the holly-tree.
The holly is dark when the rose-briar blooms,
But which will bloom most constantly?
The wild rose-briar is sweet in spring
,Its summer blossoms scent the air;
Yet wait till winter comes again,
And who will call the wild-briar fair?
Then, scorn the silly rose-wreath now,
And deck thee with holly's sheen,
That, when December blights thy brow,
He still may leave thy garland green.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Celebrity is the chastisement of merit and the punishment of talent.”
― Emily Dickinson

“Inebriate of air am I,
And debauchee of dew,
Reeling, through endless summer days,
From inns of molten blue.”
― Emily Dickinson

“The Heart is the Capital of the Mind—
The Mind is a single State—
The Heart and the Mind together make
A single Continent—

One—is the Population—
Numerous enough—
This ecstatic Nation
Seek—it is Yourself.”
― Emily Dickinson

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Emily Dickinson Quotes - (119) - Awakening Spiritual Quotations
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