Emily Dickinson

There’s Been A Death In The Opposite House

There’s been a death in the opposite house As lately as to-day. I know it by the numb look Such houses have alway. The neighbors rustle in and out, The doctor drives away. A window opens like a pod, Abrupt, mechanically; Somebody flings a mattress out,– The children hurry by; They wonder if It died on that,– I used to when a boy. The minister goes stiffly in As if the house were his, And he owned all the mourners now, And little boys besides; And then the milliner, and the man Of the appalling trade, To take the measure of the house. There’ll be that dark parade Of tassels and of coaches soon; It’s easy as a sign,– The intuition of the news In just a country town.

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