Poetess


I love the sound of poetisa, Spanish for female poet or poetess. In honor of Women’s History Month I must salute my favorite poetisas. I will focus on Emily Dickinson, Maya Angelou, and Julia Burgos.

Emily Dickinson was first introduced to me in seventh grade. My teacher would have been classified as a spinster back then. She was in her late forties and not married. Today she would be a career women and no one would care if she had ever married or not. She was somewhat melancholy and thus I suppose this was her fascination with Emily Dickinson. What I recall vividly about my teacher was her interest in nature and that she was a loner like biographers depict Emily Dickinson.

I remember the poem I wanted to know by heart was “I’m Nobody! Who are you?” It must have been the question that followed that hooked me, “Are you nobody Too?” Perhaps that simply a rhetorical question for the pre-teen soul but why did it resonate with me? After all these years of reading poems by Emily Dickinson I think about that teacher and wonder if she too asked that burning question.

So many books have been written about the life of Emily Dickinson. Three books that I believe are excellent are Lives Like Loaded Guns,  Emily Dickinson: Selected Letters, and The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson. 

To find out more about Emily Dickinson you can find information at the Poetry Foundation website: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems-and-poets/poets/detail/emily-dickinson.

Meet the challenge:

Finish this line from a poem by Emily Dickinson

“I’ll tell you how the sun rose ……”