Dickinson Songs, Book 2: The Unknown Peninsula

by Logan Skelton

Word count: 819

1. A word is dead [sung text not yet checked]

A word is dead
When it is said,
Some say.
I say it just
Begins to live - that day.

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Una parola è morta", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

2. That I did always love [sung text checked 1 time]

That I did always love
I bring thee Proof
That till I loved
I never lived — Enough —

That I shall love alway —
I argue thee
That love is life —
And life hath Immortality —

This — dost thou doubt — Sweet —
Then have I
Nothing to show
But Calvary —

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. The Moon is distant from the Sea [sung text not yet checked]

The Moon is distant from the Sea —
And yet, with Amber Hands —
She leads Him — docile as a Boy —
Along appointed Sands —

He never misses a Degree —
Obedient to Her Eye
He comes just so far — toward the Town —
Just so far — goes away —

Oh, Signor, Thine, the Amber Hand —
And mine — the distant Sea —
Obedient to the least command
Thine eye impose on me — 

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

4. I had been hungry, all the Years [sung text not yet checked]

I had been hungry, all the Years —
My Noon had Come — to dine —
I trembling drew the Table near —
And touched the Curious Wine —

'Twas this on Tables I had seen —
When turning, hungry, Lone
I looked in Windows, for the Wealth
I could not hope — to Own —

I did not know the ample Bread —
'Twas so unlike the Crumb
The Birds and I, had often shared
In Nature's — Dining Room —

The Plenty hurt me — 'twas so new —
Myself felt ill — and odd —
As Berry — of a Mountain Bush —
Transplanted — to a Road —

Nor was I hungry — so I found
That Hunger — was a way
Of Persons outside Windows —
The Entering — takes away — 

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

5. Pain – has an Element of Blank [sung text not yet checked]

Pain — has an Element of Blank —
It cannot recollect
When it begun — or if there were
A time when it was not —

It has no Future — but itself —
Its Infinite realms contain
Its Past — enlightened to perceive
New Periods — of Pain. 

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Walter A. Aue) , copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

6. She dealt her pretty words like Blades [sung text not yet checked]

She dealt her pretty words like Blades —
How glittering they shone —
And every One unbared a Nerve
Or wantoned with a Bone —

She never deemed — she hurt —
That — is not Steel's Affair —
A vulgar grimace in the Flesh —
How ill the Creatures bear —

To Ache is human — not polite —
The Film upon the eye
Mortality's old Custom —
Just locking up — to Die. 

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

7. To be forgot by thee [sung text not yet checked]

To be forgot by thee
Surpasses Memory
Of other minds
The Heart cannot forget
Unless it contemplate
What it declines
I was regarded then
Raised from oblivion
A single time
To be remembered what —
Worthy to be forgot
Is my renown

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

8. A Rat surrendered here [sung text not yet checked]

A Rat surrendered here
A brief career of Cheer
And Fraud and Fear.

Of Ignominy's due
Let all addicted to
Beware.

The most obliging Trap
Its tendency to snap
Cannot resist —

Temptation is the Friend
Repugnantly resigned
At last. 

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

9. The Whole of it came not at once [sung text not yet checked]

The Whole of it came not at once —
'Twas Murder by degrees —
A Thrust — and then for Life a chance —
The Bliss to cauterize —

The Cat reprieves the Mouse
She eases from her teeth
Just long enough for Hope to tease —
Then mashes it to death —

'Tis Life's award — to die —
Contenteder if once —
Than dying half — then rallying
For consciouser Eclipse — 

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

10. If I’m lost – now [sung text not yet checked]

If I'm lost -- now
That I was found --
Shall still my transport be --
That once -- on me -- those Jasper Gates
Blazed open -- suddenly --

That in my awkward -- gazing -- face --
The Angels -- softly peered --
And touched me with their fleeces,
Almost as if they cared --
I'm banished -- now -- you know it --
How foreign that can be --
You'll know -- Sir -- when the Savior's face
Turns so -- away from you --

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Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

11. Now I lay thee down to Sleep [sung text not yet checked]

Now I lay thee down to sleep,
I pray the Lord thy dust to keep,
and if thou live before thou wake,
I pray the Lord thy soul to make.

Authorship

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Auf eines Kindes Tod", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

12. The earth has many keys [sung text not yet checked]


Further in Summer than the Birds -
Pathetic from the Grass -
A Minor Nation celebrates
It's unobtrusive Mass -

No Ordinance be seen -
So gradual the Grace
A pensive Custom it becomes
Enlarging Loneliness -

'Tis Audiblest, at Dusk -
When Day's attempt is done -
And Nature nothing waits to do
But terminate in Tune -

Nor difference it knows
Of Cadence, or of Pause -
But simultaneous as Same -
The Service emphacize -

Nor know I when it cease -
At Candles, it is here -
When Sunrise is - that it is not -
Than this, I know no more -

The Earth has many keys -
Where Melody is not
Is the Unknown Peninsula -
Beauty - is Nature's Fact -

But Witness for Her Land -
And Witness for Her Sea -
The Cricket is Her utmost
Of Elegy, to Me -

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]