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ENGLISH III EMILY DICKINSON OPEN BOOK TEST

NAME______________________________

1. How did Emily Dickinson’s life affect her poetry? Be VERY specific.

2. What recurrent themes, symbols, metaphors, and structural choices do you notice

in Dickinson’s poetry?

3. Explain the symbolism of the school, the grain, the sun, and the mound of dirt in,

“Because I Could Not Stop for Death.”

4. Explain the last two lines of that poem.


5. In "I Heard a Fly Buzz", Dickinson imagines the moment of her own death. What

role does the fly play in this imagining? She writes "There interposed a

Fly –/With Blue – uncertain stumbling Buzz –/Between the light – and me." What

is her relationship to the fly?

6. Explain the last two lines of that poem.

7. Explain line 5 of that poem.

8. What is the “light” in “There’s a Certain Slant of Light”? Explain.

9. What is symbolized be “winter afternoons”? Explain.

10. What is referred to by “Cathedral Tunes”?


17. What is the connection between the poems' expression of religious feeling and
attitudes toward death? How is death portrayed (personified) in "Because I could
not stop for Death" (32)? How and where does the tone change in the poem?

18. In “Success Is Counted Sweetest” (67) what kinds of success are illustrated? Why
is the host “purple”? How many points of view are present in the last line?
19. What are the views of ordinary people in Frost's poems? How does he capture the
rhythms of ordinary speech through traditional verse forms?
20. What attitudes toward the passage of time are expressed in Frost's poems?
21. What American ideals are examined in the poems of Frost?
22. What are the relationships between humanity and nature explored in Frost's
poems?
23. Examine carefully the ways in which many of Frost's poems move from a
concrete image or experience to an exploration of transcendent meanings.
24. Why does the speaker in "Fire and Ice" prefer for the world to end in fire? What
kind of tone do you hear in the language, rhythm, and rhyme of this poem?
25. Why does the speaker in "Birches" prefer to see branches bent by boys rather than
by ice? Compare the ice images in this poem and other poems.
26. In "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening," what might the woods and snow
and dark symbolize?
27. Why does the speaker in "Fire and Ice" prefer for the world to end in fire? What
kind of tone do you hear in the language, rhythm, and rhyme of this poem?

28. Robert Frost describes writing poetry as "an act of clarification". What do you
think he means by this, and what do you think he clarifies in "Mending Wall?"

29. What is the effect of e e cummings’ rejection of traditional capitalization and


punctuation rules in his poems? (Take note of words which are capitalized.)
30. What kind of story is narrated in “anyone lived in a pretty how town”? Who are
the main characters?
31.