Unnumbered: Note From the Author

Unnumbered: Note From the Author


Her fame merited the dawn, so
I drove to beat the crowds
through the new light of New England
to be first in Amherst.

I thought it luck, my parking space
so near The Homestead door —
then rushed to gain admittance
to her chambered site —

‘Twas there my ardaent pace stopped
as insight held me still,
I dwelt alone with poetry
as she, despite her will.

“I wrote this short poem in the syllabic form that was often used by Emily Dickinson, her famous 8s and 6s, reminiscent of the meter of Protestant hymns. The poem is a bit of a joke on me, or an irony. I revere her so much that I anticipated a huge crowd coming to see her house, The Homestead, in Amherst, Massachusetts. Thus, I set off very early to get there from Connecticut. Of course, only a few people were there, the level of attention she’d endured all her life, despite her genius. She did not title her poems; instead, they were numbered by two scholars.”

-Susan Kinsolving,
instructor of English and poet-in-residence