Saturday, September 10, 2011

If I should cease to bring a Rose by Emily Dickinson with AfterwOrds by Chiccoreal

(image from Google Free Images rose + rose + broken nose (aka Jon Spence) Tags: london cemetery grave flickrhivemind.net0

If I should cease to bring a Rose

If I should cease to bring a Rose
Upon a festal day,
'Twill be because beyond the Rose
I have been called away —
If I should cease to take the names
My buds commemorate —
'Twill be because Death's finger
Claps my murmuring lip!

AfterwOrds by Chiccoreal

I'm not sure if I have already analyzed this poem; it seems so familiar. I'll have to look up later.

Again there is the traditional element here; the necessity to form ritual display to create a continuation of causality.

We place roses upon graves, for example, as a dutiful memory, a symbol of life.

Roses representing, symbolically, life and love.

"Festal Day" being the day of one's funeral in this poem.

The red rose being passion. I image the rose to be red in this poem, although this is not stated. A Red Rose being a Christian symbol for the resurrected Christ.

Each rose colour having its own particular symbolic intent; yellow roses for example are for conveying friendship, etc.

So poets tend to think in terms of producing a symbolic code for their poems, a sort of personal language. Emily definitely uses scores of images and symbols in her work which give a deeper meaning and understanding of her poetry. Whether or not his was intentional, and whether or not Emily ever intended her poems for public view is a point, certainly, to ponder.

I really get stuck on the last line "Claps my murmuring lip!" and "my buds commemorate". Who or what is Emily referring with "buds"? Friends? Rosebuds?

The exclamation gives away her emotion in this last line. Death the allegory is for Emily, a new life, although at the time it is fairly creepy.

Would not "clasp" rather than "claps" be more of an appropriate word here? I suppose, back then, "claps" must have meant something similar to "clasp" however "claps" does sound very violent in a way. Death never being a gentleman.

So we think we have had a deja vu feeling with this poem, that I have discussed this poem before. Maybe I have or maybe Death is playing a game on me; or Miss Emily is doing this! Funny Miss Emily!

Chiccoreal's AfterwOrds

Chicco take: "lingering longer by the wayside inn hoping to catch a glimpse of Death doing the shake rattle and roll"

Be not afraid of the thorns that"

Be not afraid of the thorns that
Death would have you feel this fear
the claps of skeletal hand across cold blue
death-grip lips

No, never feel the obligation to place upon this grave a rose
Moreover never Feel the importance of said Rose placed thereupon
as not be afeared of anything at all

Only fear recklessness
when turning one's back upon and other's life lost
and in this haphazard forgeting life's ritual
superstition has it; that the next person to forget
will be claps by the lips til dead!

So evermore remember this dear petulent one
a duty placed just so is the sworn duty of all
and ever it is to be
as it is to a rose as to rise from the grave
the necessity being a rose doth lead the way!

as one can now see
now that one foot in in the grave
is better than one foot above than below
in this lowly lone grave
without a Rose to bring it back to life!

Or without a rose being held in lieu of a life once lived
like that Rose that grows on the bower and shed blood for us
a remembrance is more than just a fragrant sense of propriety
we must appropriate the appropriate measures
a propriety of sensibilities!
and this final curtain call
most certainly does indeed
to make a bow
a last
call for a Rose
asks this of the Sweet Emily
The Proper thing to do Property Mistress!



  1. I don't think Dickinson's poem comes off as beautifully as some of her others. I find it a little awkward. I don't know it (no great surprise, she has written so many) and I find it hard to accept as hers.

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