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The Poet's Books

Helena Bebirian

Joined December 2009

Artist's Description

Dimension: 10"X10" Mounted Gesso prime treated canvas
Medium: Acrylics, based water
As of September 21, 2011—437views


Featured in— Americas~~Rural, Urban, Wild, Free
The Poet’s Book, well placed under a vase of orange roses and written in nightly.

“I Cannot Live With You” is one of Emily Dickinson’s great love poems, close in form to the poetic argument of a classic Shakespearean sonnet.¹ The poem shares the logical sensibility of the metaphysical poets whom she admired, advancing her thoughts about her lover, slowly, from the first declaration to the inevitable devastating conclusion. However, unlike most sonnet arguments or “carpe diem” poems, this poem seems designed to argue against love. The poem can be broken down into five parts. The first explains why she cannot live with her love object, the second why she cannot die with him, the third why she cannot rise with him, the fourth why she cannot fall with him, and the final utterance of impossibility. The poem begins with a sense of impossibility:
I cannot live with You –
It would be Life –
And Life is over there –
Behind the Shelf
The Sexton keeps the Key to –
Putting up
Our Life – His porcelain -
Like a Cup –
Discarded of the Housewife –
Quaint – or Broke –
A newer Sevres pleases –
Old Ones crack –

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