What techniques are used in the last stanza of Emily Dickinson's poem, "Going to Him! Happy Letter!"Is it possible to get a brief summary of the last stanza?

1 Answer | Add Yours

shake99's profile pic

shake99 | Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted on

Emily Dickinson uses the rhetorical strategies of personification and repetition in her poem “Going to Him! Happy Letter!”

She personifies the letter by speaking to it like it is a person.  Most frequently, she tells the letter to “Tell him” eight times—including twice in the last stanza. It is as though the letter has a mind and a will of its own. By repeating this particular phrase, she establishes her desire to let the intended recipient of the letter know something that is very important to her. If she had only said “Tell him” once the reader would not fully grasp the urgency that the letter writer feels regarding the person she is writing to.

Finally, the poet comments on her uncertainty and emotional hesitancy by telling the letter how to behave, which also serves to personify the letter:

But -- if He ask where you are hidUntil tomorrow --

Happy letter!

Gesture Coquette -- and shake your Head!


We’ve answered 317,573 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question