Emily Dickinson's Collected Poems

Part Three: Nature 14. I dreaded that first robin so


I dreaded that first robin so,

But he is mastered now,

And I 'm accustomed to him grown, --

He hurts a little, though.

I thought if I could only live

Till that first shout got by,

Not all pianos in the woods

Had power to mangle me.

I dared not meet the daffodils,

For fear their yellow gown

Would pierce me with a fashion

So foreign to my own.

I wished the grass would hurry,

So when 't was time to see,

He 'd be too tall, the tallest one

Could stretch to look at me.

I could not bear the bees should come,

I wished they 'd stay away

In those dim countries where they go:

What word had they for me?

They 're here, though; not a creature failed,

No blossom stayed away

In gentle deference to me,

The Queen of Calvary.

Each one salutes me as he goes,

And I my childish plumes

Lift, in bereaved acknowledgment

Of their unthinking drums.