Emily Dickinson vs. Robert Frost

Emily Dickinson vs. Robert Frost

Haley Wright, Staff Writer

As a lover and writer of poetry, Emily Dickinson and Robert Frost are names I have come to recognize, their works becoming something I idolize. I found myself mesmerized by the language they used and how beautiful they could make nature and death sound. Their poems delve into such wonderful detail that I would find myself being swallowed by them. Although both poets are great in their own right, I must say, Emily Dickinson is my favorite.

When I was first introduced to poetry in middle school, the first poem I read was Dickinson’s poem “Because I could not stop for death”. I remember feeling infuriated that I couldn’t understand the meaning, but that didn’t stop me from developing a love for poetry. As I got older, the difficult language became easier to understand as I dived further into the world of poetry. I also realized that I did not need to perfectly understand what the poem was trying to convey, if I enjoyed it and got somewhat of an understanding, that was good enough for me.

Robert Frost’s poems would take me on an adventure where I would be fighting the elements. I find his poems to be less fragile than Dickinson’s poems, where in hers, I felt I was a part of the elements, feeling them as a breeze. That’s another reason I prefer Dickinson’s poems over Frost’s, for her delicateness.

Emily Dickinson has influenced the way I write poetry. There was even a time I tried to copy her format exactly, which did not work well for me. I started writing using enjambment and realized that I did not need to rhyme. Robert Frost, on the other hand, constantly uses rhyme.

I have nothing against rhyme in poetry, it could even elevate a poem. What I have a problem with is the ingrained rule in so many young writers that poems have to rhyme. That is not the case. When reading Robert Frost’s poems, I felt that my writing must have a set structure like his. It was unrealistic to think that way.

Every creative writer has their own structure, so there’s no need to copy other writers when you have your own, unique style.