Because I Could Not Stop for Death
Death is nobody’s friend. The mention of the word death scares most if not all of us. The poem, “Because I Could Not Stop for Death,” by Emily Dickinson talks about a soul transitioning to the afterlife. She describes death as a noble gentleman, fit to be a suitor, who picks her up and together, they ride in the horse-drawn carriage. The speaker portrays death as a journey filled with serenity and contentedness.
Dickinson’s poem is a quatrain that uses a four-beat and three-beat rhythm. The three-beat rhythm helps to reinforce the pace at which the carriage is moving and, therefore, emphasizing the ease with which the speaker is with Death. In the fourth stanza, the beat brings the ideal state of the speaker as she transitions into a spirit form. In addition to this, alliteration and assonance have been used in the fourteenth line, “The Dew drew quivering and chill” to highlight the change in the twist of events (Dickinson and Susan 1).
Death is introduced as a human character who performs actions such as stopping and riding a carriage. The wagon is a metaphor which describes how we make our final passage to death. It is a mode of transportation into the afterlife. The house is also metaphorically used to reinforce the speaker’s acceptance of death emphasizing the comfort that her final resting place will offer. And finally, the sunset and the speaker’s clothes, a tippet, tulle…
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