“There’s a Certain Slant of Light” in EST

There’s a certain Slant of light, / Winter Afternoons 

That opening line of Emily Dickinson’s  poem is what I think of while the daylight increases from the Winter Solstice (December 21) to the present. I don’t think about the remaining part of the first verse in the poem:

That oppresses, like the Heft/ Of Cathedral Tunes— 

There is nothing oppressive about the increase of light during the winter over the past 52 days. The afternoon daylight has increased almost an hour, from the low point of 4:25 PM to today’s sunset at 5:19PM EST.



The evening commute is easier in the daylight/twilight, and arriving home while the sky still retains patches of blue makes one feel like the day is not quite over, that there is still potential.

Paradoxically, that is not how the poem ends:

When it comes, the Landscape listens—
Shadows—hold their breath—
When it goes, ‘t is like the Distance
On the look of Death—

Emily can be a little depressing sometimes.



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