Lines 1–4: In the opening quatrain, Dickinson cleverly disguises the subject of the poem, a snake. This creature sounds harmless enough as it is introduced in line one. The term “narrow Fellow” is a nice use of colloquial language, “narrow,” meaning small in width as compared to length, and “fellow” being a familiar term for a man or a boy, with an undertone that suggests commonness. The choice of the word “rides” is also interesting because it sounds like “glides” and “writhes” but gives the impression that the snake is being carried, or that it is...
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