“Hope Is the Thing with Feathers”

The following famous Emily Dickinson poem is apropos for any author concluding the arduous process of writing a book (as in your truly). A certain amount of apprehension always attends these times, apprehension in particular that the book will find appreciative readers (after all that work) and receive its fair share of appreciative reviews. One does all one can do and then has to let go allowing the book to meet its fate with the reading public.

I am still a few months away from publication, but I offer this classic Dickinson poem to the thousands of others who have been in this situation and walked in my shoes!


“Hope” is the thing with feathers —

That perches in the soul —

And sings the tunes without the words —

And never stops — at all —

And sweetest — in the Gale — is heard —

And sore must be the storm —

That could abash the little Bird

That kept so many warm —

I’ve heard it the chillest land —

And on the strangest Sea —

Yet never in extremity,

It asked a crumb — of Me.


Emily Dickinson Archive

[I still cannot master stanza breaks on WordPress. The poem is actually written in three quatrains!]

About Margaret Jean Langstaff

A lifelong critical reader with literary tastes, a novelist, short story writer, essayist, book critic, and professional book editor for many years. A consultant to publishers and authors, providing manuscript critiques and a full range of editorial services. A friend and supporter of all other readers and writers. A collector of signed modern first editions. Animal lover and tree hugger. Follow me on Twitter @LangstaffEditor
This entry was posted in American Literature, Emily Dickinson Poetry and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to “Hope Is the Thing with Feathers”

  1. lahowlett says:

    One of my favorites.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. bowmanauthor says:

    Perfect sentiment!


  3. D.G.Kaye says:

    Perfect poem Margaret. I wish you much success with your new publication. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Aquileana says:

    I have always loved this poem… Great share.
    Best wishes, Aquileana 😀

    Liked by 1 person

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