A Narrow Fellow in the Grass Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 25 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of A Narrow Fellow in the Grass.
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Appearances and Reality

"A Narrow Fellow in the Grass" is built around the contrast between what appears to be and what is. Dickinson wrote several "riddle" type poems, where she uses an extended metaphor to compare her subject to something, without coming right out and telling the reader what she is describing. Each stanza offers "clues" in the form of imagery, vivid word pictures such as the "spotted shaft" that divides the grass "as a comb."

Dickinson describes her object—in this case a snake—by hinting at what it resembles. The speaker falsely recognizes the object, taking it for something else. There is a split between what it appears to be and what it actually is. This theme of appearances versus reality comes through most strongly in the fourth stanza. The speaker is recalling time spent walking through the grass barefoot. The speaker—a young...

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This section contains 596 words
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Buy the A Narrow Fellow in the Grass Study Guide
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Poetry for Students
A Narrow Fellow in the Grass from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.