Verse > Emily Dickinson > Complete Poems > IV. Time & Eternity > 57. “A triumph may be of several kinds”

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

Part Four: Time and Eternity


A TRIUMPH may be of several kinds.
There ’s triumph in the room
When that old imperator, Death,
By faith is overcome.
There ’s triumph of the finer mind        5
When truth, affronted long,
Advances calm to her supreme,
Her God her only throng.
A triumph when temptation’s bribe
Is slowly handed back,        10
One eye upon the heaven renounced
And one upon the rack.
Severer triumph, by himself
Experienced, who can pass
Acquitted from that naked bar,        15
Jehovah’s countenance!


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