What elements in this poem do you find interesting? I would just like an opinion on how these elements affected people's responses? 

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The extended metaphor of Death as a gentleman is almost appealing to readers in Dickinson's "tragic vision" of the human predicament in which people are summoned to a mysterious repose. It is interesting in the fourth stanza that Dickinson rhymes "Ground" with itself in lines 18 and 20.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

I agree that it is the image of Death as a gentleman which is most striking about this poem. He comes to her instead of making her come to him, and then he makes sure she has the opportunity to review her life before he takes her to her final resting place. There is nothing violent or jarring about her transport from life to death; it is a seamless transition and Death is nothing to be afraid of in the process. 

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

I find it particularly interesting that death is personified as a kindly man who stops to give the speaker a ride in what I take to be a horse-drawn buggy. I don't feel that the speaker is actually dead but is so busily engaged with mundane matters that she never stops to think about the fact that she is going to have to die someday. In this respect she is like most of us. I like the suggestion that the speaker realizes that dying is like being taken for a long and pleasant ride and that there is nothing to fear because the destination is immortality. This is a very simple poem, written in Emily Dickinson's characteristic "common meter," but it deals with a matter of the utmost importance and has great spiritual and emotional depth.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial