Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Might I but moor

Wild nights - Wild nights!
Were I with three
Wild nights should be
Our luxury!

Futile - the winds -
To a Heart in port
Done with the Compass
Done with the Chart
Rowing in Eden

Ah-the Sea!
Might I but moor - tonight -
In thee!

~ Emily Dickinson, "Wild nights - Wild nights"

I lived in Amherst, MA for two years. I visited ED's home several times so I could go into her room, see some of her small handmade books of poems she bound together with ribbon, imagine her gazing out the windows in her bedroom, imagine her sitting at the top of the stairs when her family had company. She seldom  joined the company but would listen to all the conversation just behind the door at the top of the stairs.

What I wondered about the most, and there is no answer for this, is whether or not she ever had sex.  She did have at least a couple friendships with males for which she felt passion but it would have been so far out of her cultural values to have been anyone's lover. And there are no letters to indicate she had lovers. Then again, she asked her sister, Lavinia, to burn all the correspondence she had received over her lifetime when she died. And Lavinia did. Were there declarations of love in some of those burnt letters? or indications of more details of the very few males she, at least, had crushes on.

She loved some men.  Did she make love to them physically?

I decided, standing in her bedroom one time, that she never did have sex but being the finely wired being that she was, she understood passion, sex, love and joy.

No one knows.