Because I could not stop for Death— Questions and Answers
by Emily Dickinson

Because I could not stop for Death— book cover
Start Your Free Trial

Who is the speaker in "Because I could not stop for Death," and what is she like? Why could not she stop for death? What perspective does her present position give the poem?

The speaker in "Because I could not stop for Death" is a person who died centuries ago, and in this poem she reflects upon how she was simply too busy to die when Death showed up and took her anyway. Her mood is reflective, and the narrative is controlled.

Expert Answers info

Julianne Hansen, M.A. eNotes educator | Certified Educator

briefcaseTeacher (K-12)

bookM.A. from Clemson University

calendarEducator since 2019

write2,070 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and History

The speaker is a person who has died centuries ago and is reflecting upon the day Death showed up to take her to her eternity.

We know that she felt like she was just too busy to die:

Because I could not stop for Death –

There were too many things to do and accomplish. She had no time to stop, and death wasn't on her radar. Nonetheless, Death showed up and took her.

She is accepting of her fate. There is no indication that she attempted to resist the inevitable, and she willingly goes along with Death to review her life, represented through the metaphors of the schoolhouse (her...

(The entire section contains 322 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

check Approved by eNotes Editorial