The Props assist the House (729)

By Emily Dickinson 1830–1886 Emily Dickinson
The Props assist the House
Until the House is built
And then the Props withdraw
And adequate, erect,
The House support itself
And cease to recollect
The Augur and the Carpenter –
Just such a retrospect
Hath the perfected Life –
A Past of Plank and Nail
And slowness – then the scaffolds drop
Affirming it a Soul –

Emily Dickinson, “The Props assist the House” from The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson, edited by Thomas H. Johnson. Copyright © 1945, 1951, 1955, 1979, 1983 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. Reprinted with the permission of The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.

Source: The Poems of Emily Dickinson Edited by R.W. Franklin (Harvard University Press, 1999)

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Poet Emily Dickinson 1830–1886

POET’S REGION U.S., New England

Subjects Religion, Jobs & Working, Activities, The Spiritual

Poetic Terms Common Measure, Metaphor

 Emily  Dickinson

Biography

A poet who took definition as her province, Emily Dickinson challenged the existing definitions of poetry and the poet’s work. Like writers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, and Walt Whitman, she experimented with expression in order to free it from conventional restraints. Like writers such as Charlotte Brontë and Elizabeth Barrett Browning, she crafted a new type of persona for the first person. The speakers in . . .

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Poems by Emily Dickinson

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Religion, Jobs & Working, Activities, The Spiritual

POET’S REGION U.S., New England

Poetic Terms Common Measure, Metaphor

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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