Verse > Emily Dickinson > Complete Poems > I. Life > 62. “Before I got my eye put out”

Emily Dickinson (1830–86).  Complete Poems.  1924.

Part One: Life


BEFORE I got my eye put out,
I liked as well to see
As other creatures that have eyes,
And know no other way.
But were it told to me, to-day,        5
That I might have the sky
For mine, I tell you that my heart
Would split, for size of me.
The meadows mine, the mountains mine,—
All forests, stintless stars,        10
As much of noon as I could take
Between my finite eyes.
The motions of the dipping birds,
The lightning’s jointed road,
For mine to look at when I liked,—        15
The news would strike me dead!
So, safer, guess, with just my soul
Upon the window-pane
Where other creatures put their eyes,
Incautious of the sun.   20


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