All of Dickinson’s Creatures, Mostly Small

In her 1,789 poems, [Dickinson] refers to animals nearly 700 times, to plants almost 600 times, and to fungi four times. In her more than 350 references to flowers, the rose is most common (51 mentions) followed by daisies, clover, daffodils, and buttercups. She refers to birds 317 times, favoring the robin (47 mentions), followed by the bobolink, oriole, sparrow, blue jay, and blue bird. Although a few foreign species pop up now and then—the leopard, elephant, rhinoceros—the most frequently referenced creatures by far are the same ones she observed in her backyard every day—the bee, butterfly, and squirrel.

How Emily Dickinson Grew Her Genius in Her Family’s Backyard, by Ferris Jabr, Slate.

The Dickinson home, Amherst,                         Massachusetts 


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