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Poetic Antagonyms

Poetic Antagonyms DaviD- aNToiNe williamS Bruised are our words and our full thought Breaks like dull rain from some rich cloud. Isaac Rosenberg My subject is lexical self-opposition in English poetry. I approach it at a time of aggravated national self-opposition, from the viewpoint of a poet who had separated herself from the common life of her society, but like her I am concerned less with passing, outward antagonisms and more with an enduring, inward antagonism. In early 1864, Emily Dickinson wrote a poem (Fr867B) about the experience of holding together a series of thoughts that seem both to resist each other and rebel against the thinker: 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 them fit The thought behind, I strove to join Unto the thought before But Sequence ravelled out of Sound Like Balls - upon a Floor - (Fr867B) There are many ways of discussing the tropes of division in this remarkable poem about a mind divided against itself. Dickinson's distinctive dash, for instance, here performs most ambivalently (and so most fully) its dual role as joiner and divider, http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Comparatist University of North Carolina Press

Poetic Antagonyms

The Comparatist , Volume 37 (1) – May 12, 2013

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © Southern Comparative Literature Association.
ISSN
1559-0887
Publisher site
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Abstract

DaviD- aNToiNe williamS Bruised are our words and our full thought Breaks like dull rain from some rich cloud. Isaac Rosenberg My subject is lexical self-opposition in English poetry. I approach it at a time of aggravated national self-opposition, from the viewpoint of a poet who had separated herself from the common life of her society, but like her I am concerned less with passing, outward antagonisms and more with an enduring, inward antagonism. In early 1864, Emily Dickinson wrote a poem (Fr867B) about the experience of holding together a series of thoughts that seem both to resist each other and rebel against the thinker: 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 them fit The thought behind, I strove to join Unto the thought before But Sequence ravelled out of Sound Like Balls - upon a Floor - (Fr867B) There are many ways of discussing the tropes of division in this remarkable poem about a mind divided against itself. Dickinson's distinctive dash, for instance, here performs most ambivalently (and so most fully) its dual role as joiner and divider,

Journal

The ComparatistUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: May 12, 2013

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