Upon Seeing Emily Dickinson’s House, My First Day in Amherst.

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I imagine Emily in the window, her white dress fading a little.  She is protected by the walls of her familiar room. She is dwelling in the possible, as she put it.  The floors are washed with a sunlight that doesn’t let on to the deceiving cold of spring’s first days or the searing heat of summer. There is comfort in this unknowing place, there in hope in hesitation.

And, then I image her descending the stairs, and walking out onto the lawn. I see her steps shaking dew from the morning grass, and the goose bumps rising-up on her ankles.  In that moment, we are both staring back at the house, where she imagined this place so differently.

Emily Dickinson is survived by more than one-thousand poems and a collection of pressed flowers in a vault at Harvard. It felt important for me to see her home, as I was now alone in Amherst too. I, like her, know the feathered thing- the gentle joy of a chosen uncertainty.  The real magic of this fickle world is in the nearly-real, the perhaps, the "could be".