Hope (according to Emily Dickinson)

 “Hope” is the Thing with Feathers


Hope is the thing with feathers  
That perches in the soul,  
And sings the tune without the words,  
And never stops at all,  

And sweetest in the gale is heard;          
And sore must be the storm  
That could abash the little bird  
That kept so many warm.  
I’ve heard it in the chillest land,  
And on the strangest sea;         
Yet, never, in extremity,  
It asked a crumb of me.

-Emily Dickinson, 1830 – 1886

Hope is hard.

I’ve been asking myself what it looks like to hope and I stumbled across this gem.

Maybe hope is like a song, notes going up and down. Maybe it’s soft in the storms, almost imperceptible through the wild winds. I imagine when the sea finally calms, and the sun rises, the little bird’s song grows louder, clearer, and louder still. Perhaps the courage of the feathery thing to begin a song will draw the others in to sing along.


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