Have You Got a Brook in Your Little Heart

Photo by Joshua Woroniecki on Pexels.com

Welcome to the November edition of the poetry corner! This month’s poem comes from a poet near and dear to me. Emily Dickinson was a poetic genius unrecognized in her lifetime. When I was a kid, I had a story book about her (and I actually still have it. It’s gathering dust, waiting for me to decide to have a kid) and the encounter she has with a little girl who lives in a neighboring house. Emily’s poems were usually very sad. Most were about death (and if you want to, you can sing her poem “Because I could not stop for death” to the Gilligan’s Island theme song). She was very depressed and lived a life of seclusion, because so many of her friends and loved ones died. She had a few poems published when she was alive, but the biggest bulk of them were found after her death. This poem is wonderful cautionary one, telling you to not lose your motivations and spirit.

Have you got a brook in your little heart,
    Where bashful flowers blow,
    And blushing birds go down to drink,
    And shadows tremble so?

    And nobody knows, so still it flows,
    That any brook is there;
    And yet your little draught of life
    Is daily drunken there.

    Then look out for the little brook in March,
    When the rivers overflow,
    And the snows come hurrying from the hills,
    And the bridges often go.

    And later, in August it may be,
    When the meadows parching lie,
    Beware, lest this little brook of life
    Some burning noon go dry!

“Have You Got a Brook in Your Little Heart,” Emily Dickinson

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