'Arcturus' Is His Other Name Poem by Emily Dickinson

'Arcturus' Is His Other Name

Rating: 3.0


'Arcturus' is his other name—
I'd rather call him 'Star.'
It's very mean of Science
To go and interfere!

I slew a worm the other day—
A 'Savant' passing by
Murmured 'Resurgam'—'Centipede'!
'Oh Lord—how frail are we'!

I pull a flower from the woods—
A monster with a glass
Computes the stamens in a breath—
And has her in a 'class'!

Whereas I took the Butterfly
Aforetime in my hat—
He sits erect in 'Cabinets'—
The Clover bells forgot.

What once was 'Heaven'
Is 'Zenith' now—
Where I proposed to go
When Time's brief masquerade was done
Is mapped and charted too.

What if the poles should frisk about
And stand upon their heads!
I hope I'm ready for 'the worst'—
Whatever prank betides!

Perhaps the 'Kingdom of Heaven's' changed—
I hope the 'Children' there Won't be 'new fashioned' when I come—
And laugh at me—and stare—

I hope the Father in the skies
Will lift his little girl—
Old fashioned—naught—everything—
Over the stile of 'Pearl.'

'Arcturus' Is His Other Name
Kevin Straw 01 September 2012

She is wrong about Heaven being charted. If Heaven is anywhere it is beyond science to chart. If science is at odds with religion where does it come from - the Devil? Is discovery God's work or Satan's. I think the last two verses are a bit twee.

12 23 Reply
Stevie Taite 01 September 2012

And I think that she was not totally convinced about an existence of god! Zenith gave this away! But still was hedging her bets as science cannot disprove nor prove it!

23 7 Reply
Henry Norton 20 November 2012

I don't think this is one of her better poems, simply because you don't have to work very much to understand it. Images and metaphors are obvious,

14 13 Reply
Jacob Arden 01 September 2012

In the battle between - carrying on the tradition of Religion and the existence of God and embracing Agnostic theology as scientific discoveries, which in her thoughts failed neither to prove nor disprove his existence. I could've swore this poem was written yesterday, what an amazing piece. Pardon my modest comment I am just an infant to poetry

20 6 Reply
Stevie Taite 01 September 2012

I see this a a timeless piece, that could have been written today. Pearl means pearly gates? She has studied gods good earth and oh the life she has sacrificed to understand it. She is not old fashioned but inquisitive. Kids of our age are often too wrapped up in technology to notice or care for it! This his how this has stood as timeless for me!

16 9 Reply
Madathil Rajendran Nair 10 March 2015

Man has interfered with and altered the sanity of things beyond measure to suit his convenience. Yet, he needs the Father in the skies to remain unchanged and lift him up like a little kid, when his journey ends. Wonderful poem!

1 1 Reply
Soul Watcher 23 February 2015

What a great pome this is. I liked so much.

0 0 Reply
Mohammad Skati 01 September 2014

This is a great masterpiece of a great poetess.

4 1 Reply
Angelina Holmes 03 May 2014

Arcturus is the 4th brightest star and the brightest star in the constellation Bootes,36 light-years from Earth. I find it lovely that she writes about such a star :) Nice personification too

4 1 Reply
Brian Jani 25 April 2014

Nice work like this poem

1 0 Reply
Emily Dickinson

Emily Dickinson

Amherst / Massachusetts
Error Success