Finding is the first Act
The second, loss,
Third, Expedition for
The “Golden Fleece”
Fourth, no Discovery—
Fifth, no Crew—
Finally, no Golden Fleece—
— Emily Dickinson
This has almost become a mantra for me, one of the few poems I’ve committed to memory. Yet, as with most of Emily Dickinson’s enigmatic works, it remains a mystery. What are we talking about here? Love? Writing? Life itself? Agree? Disagree?
Recent posts have talked about the hazards and pitfalls of writing (and other forms of art). I’m leaving this post up for a while in hopes that gleams of illumination, certain slants of light, may glance from some or many of you on Emily Dickinson’s “observation”— or anything else that occurs to you.
Amazing poem — new to me.
Will live with it a while… D
Good — I have hopes you’ll come up with some excellent Slant.
Could be facebook 😉
Well, there’s a novel interpretation!
Were she to be living now, you could be right 😉
You say this poem has almost become a mantra for you; would it be impertinent for me to suggest, therefore, that on some level it communicates to you, or at least informs you? Emily Dickinson often articulates elements of what I regard as typically human internal dialogue around coming to terms with disappointment and disillusionment.
In his book, The Mystic Path to Cosmic Power, Vernon Howard asserts that “Disillusionment with yourself must precede Enlightenment.” Whilst not an aficionado (let alone a committed devotee) of Howard and his teachings ― see http://www.anewlife.org ― I reckon he’s right on the money with this.
What you write makes me blink and open my eyes and say, Of course! Why didn’t I remember that!
The whole quest to Zen is this (at least IMHO), and I often think how Zen-like E.D. is without being at all overtly, or biographically, such.
Several times in posts here I’ve used the Enso, the symbol for Nothing (the meaning of the word Zen). I’ve come to love it, but seem to have forgotten the struggle to get to that place. Thank you for “remembering” me of it.
What’s the difference between love, writing, and life itself?
We’ve been trying to decipher myths forever – I like the idea that the story of Jason and the Golden Fleece may have as one of its sources the practice of using a ram’s fleece to trap gold particles washed down from upcreek.
As for ED, she, too, mines her own disillusionment upstream and sends the gold on down to us.
On the difference between love etc. — leaving that one strictly alone. Certainly at the moment.
As to idea #3: what a gorgeous comment and metaphor all in one. From the Mistress of Metaphor —
(I didn’t know that about the ram’s fleece! For real?)