W104 | Emily Dickinson's Poems | Don Barkin


3:30 - 5:00 p.m.

In-person at the  Daniels Art Center, Bard College at Simon's Rock, Great Barrington

6/7, 6/14, 6/21, 6/28

Four Sessions

Limit: 15


She can seem grand and tragic (“Because I could not stop for Death --”) or wry and sunny (“We like March, his shoes are purple.”) One scholar called her work “a drama of erotic loss.” You’d also call her an audacious philosopher. Dickinson gives her wisdoms away almost wincingly. Her profile has gotten all mixed up with her person, and she is an attractive character, clever and elusive. But in these four sessions, we’ll mostly give her poems a good read. We’ll also read a few words by two neighboring writers she read for sugar, Thoreau and Emerson. We’ll read Dickinson’s poems from a paperback collection and the rest from a meager photocopied packet. Our class will get priority registration for a  July 6 bus trip to Emily Dickinson’s house in Amherst, to see if the place smacks of the poet.

Don Barkin has degrees from Harvard College and Cambridge University. He has taught seminars for a number of years at Yale and Wesleyan. He has published three books of poetry. He has been a newspaper reporter and schoolteacher.

Don recommends The Essential Emily Dickinson, selected and with an introduction by Joyce Carol Oates. The ISBN is: 978-0-06-266887-5.


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