Final Harvest Essay

921 words - 4 pages

Final HarvestIn Dickinson's Final Harvest, there are several themes throughout each of her poems. In the poems, "The Brain - is wider than the Sky-"(161) and "I felt a cleaving in my mind,"(not in the book) one main theme that is similar in both of these poems is the "mind." However, there is a contradiction. In the first poem, the speaker is saying that the mind is so big that it can "contain" such things as the sky and the ocean. In the second poem, the speaker is almost lost because she cannot collect her thoughts. The contradiction is that the mind can comprehend all things but the speaker cannot collect her thoughts.In the first stanza of "The Brain - is wider than the Sky-"(161), the speaker states:The Brain - is wider than the Sky -For - put them side by side -The one the other will containWith ease - and You - besides -"The Brain" or the human mind is wider than the Sky (the outer world) because the mind comprehends or "contains" almost everything in the Sky and the outer world. The sky is used as a metaphor for boundless amounts of information because the sky is so constant and vast. The second stanza reads as follows:The Brain is deeper than the sea -For - hold them - Blue to Blue -The one the other will absorb -As Sponges - Buckets - do -In this stanza, the speaker states that the mind is "deeper than the sea" because the brain can comprehend almost everything that is in the ocean and all bodies of water. The mind can "absorb" all this knowledge like a sponge can absorb water and hold it like a bucket holds water. The first metaphor used is the ocean because it is also vast and constant as the sky in the first stanza. The metaphor of the sponges and buckets are used to help create a vision of how the brain can absorb and hold knowledge. In the last stanza, the speaker states:The Brain is just the weight of God -For - Heft them - Pound for Pound -And they will differ - if they do -As Syllable from Sound -There is alliteration in the third and fourth lines of this stanza with the words "differ" and "do" and "Syllable" and "Sound." The speaker in this stanza is comparing the weight of human knowledge or the brain to that of God. They differ as "Syllable" (something that you can touch and has form) and "Sound" (something that you can hear but can't see or feel with no form.) Human knowledge or "The Brain" creates the form and the weight of God. The brain has a shape and a texture and can absorb all types of information....

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