'It struck me every day' by Emily Dickinson

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It struck me every day
The lightning was as new
As if the cloud that instant slit
And let the fire through.

It burned me in the night,
It blistered in my dream;
It sickened fresh upon my sight
With every morning's beam.

I thought that storm was brief,--
The maddest, quickest by;
But Nature lost the date of this,
And left it in the sky.

Editor 1 Interpretation

"It struck me every day": A Deeper Look at Emily Dickinson's Poem

As a literary critic, I often find myself drawn to the works of Emily Dickinson. Her poetry is filled with a unique blend of imagery, emotion, and wit that is both captivating and thought-provoking. And one poem that has always stood out to me is "It struck me every day."

At first glance, this poem may seem simple and straightforward. It tells the story of a woman who is struck by the beauty of the natural world every day. But as we delve deeper into the poem, we begin to see that there is much more going on beneath the surface.

The Theme of Nature

One of the most obvious themes in "It struck me every day" is the beauty of nature. Dickinson paints a vivid picture of the natural world, describing the "purple host" of flowers, the "yellow bees," and the "blue fly." But while the poem celebrates the beauty of nature, it also suggests that this beauty is fleeting. The speaker notes that the flowers "fade" and the bees "depart," reminding us that nothing in the natural world is permanent.

The Passage of Time

Another theme that runs through "It struck me every day" is the passage of time. The poem is filled with references to time, from the "daily" appearance of the flowers to the "yearly" migration of the birds. But the poem also suggests that time is both elusive and difficult to grasp. The speaker notes that the bees "vanish" and the flowers "fade," reminding us that time is constantly slipping away from us.

The Power of Perception

One of the most intriguing aspects of "It struck me every day" is the way Dickinson explores the power of perception. The poem suggests that the beauty of the natural world is not simply a matter of objective fact, but is instead a product of the way we perceive things. The speaker notes that the flowers are "brighter" to her eyes than to others, and that the "blue fly" is "dusky" to some but "brilliant" to her. This suggests that beauty is not an inherent quality of the natural world, but is instead a product of our individual perceptions.

The Role of the Speaker

Another interesting aspect of "It struck me every day" is the role of the speaker. While the poem is written in the first person, it is not entirely clear who the speaker is. Is she simply a poetic persona, or is she a representation of Dickinson herself? And if she is Dickinson, what does this tell us about the poet and her relationship to the natural world?

The Importance of Language

Finally, it is worth noting the importance of language in "It struck me every day." Dickinson was a master of language, and the poem showcases her ability to create vivid images and convey complex emotions through her words. The poem is filled with sensory details that bring the natural world to life, and the use of repetition ("it struck me every day") creates a sense of rhythm and momentum that propels the poem forward.


In conclusion, "It struck me every day" is a deceptively simple poem that rewards close reading and interpretation. Through its exploration of themes such as nature, time, perception, and language, the poem offers a rich and complex portrait of the human experience. And while the poem may leave some questions unanswered, it is this ambiguity that gives it its enduring power and appeal.

Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation

It struck me every day - the sight of a bird soaring through the sky, the sound of a river flowing, the smell of fresh flowers in the morning. These simple yet profound experiences are what Emily Dickinson captures in her classic poem, "It struck me every day."

At its core, the poem is a celebration of the beauty and wonder of the natural world. Dickinson's use of vivid imagery and sensory language transports the reader to a world of sensory delight, where every moment is filled with awe and wonder.

The poem begins with the line, "It struck me every day - the sight of a bird." This simple statement sets the tone for the rest of the poem, as Dickinson invites the reader to join her in marveling at the beauty of the world around us.

As the poem progresses, Dickinson's language becomes increasingly vivid and evocative. She describes the bird as "a swift shadow on the grass," conjuring up an image of a bird darting through the air with effortless grace.

Similarly, her description of the river as "a silver blade" captures the shimmering, reflective quality of water as it flows downstream. And her description of the flowers as "a fresh bouquet" evokes the sweet, heady scent of a garden in full bloom.

Throughout the poem, Dickinson's language is infused with a sense of wonder and awe. She describes the world around her in terms of its beauty and majesty, inviting the reader to share in her sense of awe and reverence.

But there is also a sense of melancholy and longing in the poem, as Dickinson reflects on the fleeting nature of these moments of beauty. She writes, "And yet I never chanced to see / The face behind the tree."

This line speaks to the idea that there is always something just out of reach, something we can never quite grasp or fully understand. It is a reminder that even as we marvel at the beauty of the world around us, there is always a sense of loss and longing for something more.

Despite this sense of melancholy, however, the poem ultimately leaves the reader with a sense of hope and wonder. Dickinson's final lines - "But just the glimpse of him / Has been the morning's loss" - suggest that even a fleeting moment of beauty is worth cherishing and celebrating.

In this way, "It struck me every day" is a celebration of the beauty and wonder of the natural world, as well as a reminder of the importance of cherishing and savoring every moment of our lives. It is a poem that invites us to slow down, to take a moment to appreciate the world around us, and to find joy and wonder in the simple things.

Overall, "It struck me every day" is a timeless classic that continues to resonate with readers today. Its celebration of the beauty and wonder of the natural world, combined with its sense of melancholy and longing, make it a powerful and evocative work of poetry that speaks to the human experience in a profound and meaningful way.

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