Verse > Emily Dickinson > Complete Poems > II. Nature > 82. “There’s a certain slant of light”
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Emily Dickinson (1830–86).  Complete Poems.  1924.

Part Two: Nature

LXXXII


THERE’S a certain slant of light,
On winter afternoons,
That oppresses, like the weight
Of cathedral tunes.
  
Heavenly hurt it gives us;        5
We can find no scar,
But internal difference
Where the meanings are.
  
None may teach it anything,
’T is the seal, despair,—        10
An imperial affliction
Sent us of the air.
  
When it comes, the landscape listens,
Shadows hold their breath;
When it goes, ’t is like the distance        15
On the look of death.

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