Reviving Emily

(on the making of an Emily Dickinson film)

Dainty Daisy hands
crafting a poem
with
glue and Bible words.

Turning pages,
bookmarks,
trinkets…
moving time:
bringing Emily
to the 1940s
in the 21st century.

Now she’s dancing –
in her gestures
rhythm and movement,
just as in her words.
Is she dancing
for Master?
Or a dance
for herself?

The actress
performs
a resurrection.
Her youthfulness
given
to portrayal.
Once more
Emily breathes.

Unknown
to us,
the actress is
secretly
crumbling:
arthritic joints
beginning to lock.

Emily’s dance
of renewal
becoming
the actress’s
last bow.

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27 thoughts on “Reviving Emily

  1. oh i wish she’s dancing for herself… bringing her from the 40’s to the 21st century…the renewal, the crumbling…haven’t heard about the film but will be interesting to get to know her a bit better

  2. intriguing the juxtaposition of emily and the actress in this…have not seen a movie on emily…did see lincoln this last weekend…and it is intersting the lenses through which we view our histories…and the motivations in words…

    • The actress was interesting in her own right – lots of intelligent energy, and a trained dancer, so when I heard of her arthritis, I was taken with the thought that she was reviving someone, while her own bones deteriorated.

  3. Apparently all young American men who have any literary thoughts at all fall in love with Emily Dickinson. I’m shamefully unfamiliar with her work – something I think I should rectify, even though I am not American!

    I love the capturing of that juxtaposition of a dancer’s final part being to bring new life to a dead poet.

  4. The poem is a great tease..or better yet…appetite whetter…would love to see this film and hope funding comes through!

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