famous poetry
| Famous Poetry | Roleplay | Free Video Tutorials | Online Poetry Club | Free Education | Best of Youtube | Ear Training

I heard a fly buzz when I died; Analysis



Author: Poetry of Emily Dickinson Type: Poetry Views: 4675

Sponsored Links





I heard a fly buzz when I died;

The stillness round my form

Was like the stillness in the air

Between the heaves of storm.



The eyes beside had wrung them dry,

And breaths were gathering sure

For that last onset, when the king

Be witnessed in his power.



I willed my keepsakes, signed away

What portion of me I

Could make assignable,--and then

There interposed a fly,



With blue, uncertain, stumbling buzz,

Between the light and me;

And then the windows failed, and then

I could not see to see.








Sponsor



Learn to Play Songs by Ear: Ear Training

122 Free Video Tutorials

[Video Tutorial] How to build google chrome extensions

Please add me on youtube. I make free educational video tutorials on youtube such as Basic HTML and CSS.

Free Online Education from Top Universities

Yes! It's true. Online College Education is now free!



||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

.: :.

emily was a very god fearing woman. in this poem she is questioning her faith. the stillness in the air, means there is no amazing god felt presence as one religious person would expect when death is near. and when there interposed a fly, between her and the \"light\" it just shows that she fears that there may not be an afterlife. that maybe there is nothing but decay to a human body and the fly was there to feed on hers. i love this poem, its deep.

| Posted on 2011-12-19 | by a guest


.: :.

I actually just took a final where I had to analyse this poem, I came to the conclusion that this isnt about death in the literal sense but a metaphor for some 16 year old girl getting knocked up. I know its soooo not the normal analysis but check it out, it makes sense. I\'ll actually write it up and bring it in here if anyone wants me too.

| Posted on 2010-12-20 | by a guest


.: :.

(By MERLIN Berganza)
I came with this interpretaion!!! Hope it helps. Good Luck!!!
The narrator is death and she heard a fly buzz; the room is silent except for the fly. The poem describes calm between heaves, suggesting that disturbance proceeded this moment and that more disturbance will follow. It is a moment of expectation, of waiting. She describes the stillness round her form is like the stillness in the air meaning that her time is over and there is nothing that she can do about.
The people witnessing her death have already overcome it “The eyes beside had wrung them dry,” \"that last onset\" may indicate that death is about to happen. Onset means a beginning and last means an end. For Christians, death represents the beginning of eternal life. When she introduces “when the king/ Be witnessed in his power.\" The king is God; for Christian God will have the last judgment and will decide if a person goes to heaven or hell.
The Fly is to consider to represent Beelzebub, the lord of the Flies “evil o Satan. The most important, the king in the room is God. The presence of both characters may represent that in last judgment is the defendant and the prosecutor. The narrator says “There interposed a fly,/ With blue, uncertain, stumbling buzz,/ Between the light and me;” the fly can be seen as Satan trying to block her way to heaven and the light may be the representation of eternal life in heaven, then she says “And then the windows failed, and then/ I could not see to see.” She dies and can not reach heaven because she can no longer see the light.

| Posted on 2010-12-06 | by a guest


.: :.

yeah, so uuuum, this poem is about some chick dying...and she uhhh, had sex with the fly and now it\'s mocking her cuz it gave her syphilis and that\'s why she\'s dying...plus the king (god) is watching in amusement...that is all

| Posted on 2010-11-02 | by a guest


.: :.

The fly is irritating her as it\'s coming between herself and the \"light\" as she dies ie, the light your supposed to see when you die. She may be questioning religion and life after death.

| Posted on 2010-10-02 | by a guest


.: :.

The speaker is already dead. She has conciousness after death and the fly is lying in wait to consume her rotting flesh.

| Posted on 2010-07-22 | by a guest


.: :.

This guy has been clearly drinking too much. He died of alcohol poisoning. He probably drank the 5 o'. He hears his buzz because he had one the last time he could remember anything.

| Posted on 2010-05-26 | by a guest


.: :.

yea yea 2-26 SLO 805 thugs. homeys aint got nothin on us

| Posted on 2010-02-26 | by a guest


.: :.

Dude okiee you are awesome whoever posted it on 2/26 but the guy who posted it on 2005 05 06 you need to get a life

| Posted on 2010-02-26 | by a guest


.: :.

wow the analyization posted on 2-26 is so insightful. That absolutely blew my mind. I feel so much smarter after reading this thanx bros

| Posted on 2010-02-26 | by a guest


.: :.

Clearly the fly represents beelzbub because he is the lord of the flies. Furthermore, the king in the room is god. The poem represents the fight between good and evil and the devil vs. god for each persons soul.
You just got analyzed beez

| Posted on 2010-02-26 | by a guest


.: :.

The buzz of the fly represents death & when the fly goes buzz she dies .... something like that, whatevah ! :)

| Posted on 2009-12-13 | by a guest


.: :.

by angela: wow some of the things are really helpful but others are just saying crap, dude if ur dissing what the writers here are saying means u dont get what they mean or ur just plain dumb, dont critisize some1's hard wrk. thank you, to the ones who really did help out( though i didnt ask for the analysis, it helped me out too) :) :) :)

| Posted on 2009-11-28 | by a guest


.: :.

I think she is trying to show how we as humans try to console ourselves with stories of eternal life, God and Heaven,that even in our dying moment we try to see hope, but nothing really comes of it all. That there is no new awakening in a heaven. That there is only life as we make of it. After we die nothing is truly affected or changed. That dying is just a natural part of life and the world will keep on going just as it was.

| Posted on 2009-09-22 | by a guest


.: :.

So my friend and I have came to the conclusion that this Emily gisl was on acid and LSD when she ran into a fly, talking about how the flatulence bestowed the stillness in the air, earlier that evening; before she died...gross.
- you all are imbeciles...

| Posted on 2009-05-07 | by a guest


.: :.

So my friend and I have came to the conclusion that this Emily gisl was on acid and LSD when she ran into a fly, talking about how the flatulence bestowed the stillness in the air, earlier that evening; before she died...gross.
- you all are imbeciles...

| Posted on 2009-05-07 | by a guest


.: :.

Hi im actually writing a paper on this right now.
The speaker is waiting for death to come and she sees God (the king) and has hope(the light) of going to heaven but then the fly comes in and blocks her path to heaven. The fly can be seen as something that is just blocking her way and pulling her away from death or as satan trying to block her way to heaven (an old nickname for satan was Lord of the Flies...and yes the name predates the book :)). Thats what we talked about in my class...hope this helps!

| Posted on 2009-03-16 | by a guest


.: :.

i have been thinking about this for a couple of days now and i have a paper due and i cant think of the theme of this dang poem! can anyone help?

| Posted on 2009-03-09 | by a guest


.: :.

I think it means before she died she had something like a sin; or bad stuff she did. So now shes dead and cant rest in peace!!! :)

| Posted on 2009-01-22 | by a guest


.: :.

Two ways to look at this for me.
First the literal. For, me, in dire situations, or conditions of dangerous sickness, there is a sharp, otherwordly, morning kind of clarity to your surroundings. I believe that is what the poem is about. The person is dying and in that moment, nothing is insignificant, all sensory information is relevant. I also get a sense of the absurdity in witnessing something so common as a fly buzzing in the room at the time of the final moment in this person's life.
Non literal. She was dying and her mind was turning inward and as she died. She became less aware of her surroundings and more aware of herself and the blue, uncertain buzz between her and the light was the process of her leaving her body behind, the light being where she goes after death.

| Posted on 2009-01-13 | by a guest


.: :.

i think i heard a fly buzz meant it was intence quitness when she died.the part which she said "the eyes around.them dry"i guess she wanted 2 ce god but instead she saw a fly.the part she said "i willed....away"she meant she had made her well an so she is ready for death.i think that wat she meant

| Posted on 2009-01-04 | by a guest


.: :.

Its about how we notice even the most minute details of the most important moments of our lives- duh.

| Posted on 2008-12-04 | by a guest


.: :.

This site is pretty ridiculus and most of the people replying are pretty much idiots.

| Posted on 2008-12-02 | by a guest


.: :.

I think that she was actually representing the fears she has of becoming a fly in her next life. We all now she was hindu and she really didn't want to come back and half to crawl all over poop for the 24 hour life span of a fly. or however long they live. So yea...fly=fear

| Posted on 2008-11-18 | by a guest


.: :.

yea that analysis was pretty much posed bye me haley! yeah!!!!

| Posted on 2008-10-05 | by a guest


.: :.

In the beginning stanza I feel that she is comparing something other than a flys buzzing to when she died. That it is being used to describe the loneliness in the room and her only company is a small insect. The stillness around her form I interpret to be a barrier she holds against the world, (considering her living habits in her later years of poetry she spent living secluded in a room) I think, Between the heaves of storm, could mean in between the problems and rough spots of life. In the next stanza I feel that she is describing the people she knew who had cried their eyes out and eventually left a stillness and acceptance of her fate that a King (god) took with his power. The third stanza translates to be her property, feelings memories and choices being given away along with part of her. Her life she seems to say is being taken from her and the only thing left to replace them is a fly, symbolizing the nothingness she has left. In the last stanza With blue, uncertain, stumbling buzz, is her way of describing the sadness and confusion of sounds that kept her from reaching the light (dying). The last two verses seem to express her reluctance to leave now that she was trapped within herself. .

| Posted on 2008-10-05 | by a guest


.: :.

This poem is about the speaker dying and while she died she basically took a crap, thus, the fly. Short and simple. Don't even try to argue it.

| Posted on 2008-09-26 | by a guest


.: :.

I think the fly is symbolic of a possible flaw in the speaker's virtues (that everyone in the room has found out). It could be something she fears may prevents her from entering heaven.

| Posted on 2008-04-08 | by a guest


.: annonymous :.

This poem is basically saying when she died she heard a fly buzz by and it caught her attention because in was in the way of her seeing the light to heaven and getting their. I think the fly was an obstacle in her way and she had to get to heaven in a certain amount of time, but unfortunately time ran out and she did not get to reach heaven.

| Posted on 2007-05-04 | by a guest


.: Alternative :.

Perhaps the fly is symbolic of Beelzebub; the Lord of the Flies. Could Beelzebub be trying to come between the dying girl and God, trying to block her view of the light, rendering her uncapable of physically seeing God before her "windows" (eyes) failed her?

| Posted on 2007-05-01 | by a guest


.: buzz :.

In this first stanza, the scene of a deathbed is set. No specifics are given about the room, the dying speaker, or the people that wait in the room for an outcome. The fly is introduced and its significance is not explained as of yet. One detail that is heavily stressed is "stillness in the room." The word stillness is repeated and compared with the calm in a storm. This suggests two things: the motionlessness of death and the anticipation of something yet to come. The calm within the "heaves of storm" is a waiting period for something to happen. That something could be the actual event of breathing a last breath or what happens either simultaneously to the last breath or immediately after. One would assume that this event is being accepted into heaven or meeting God. The stillness signifies both the nearly deceased speaker and the people in the room. They await the death completely still out of respect and fear of death.

return to the top
The second stanza discusses the state of mind of those waiting by the deathbed of the speaker. They have obviously been crying by the suggestion that their eyes had "wrung them dry." Through this description that they have stopped their weeping it is implied that they have now accepted the death of the speaker. In the second line of this stanza, the people are holding their breath for "that last Onset - when the King be witnessed." The King is probably God in this context and they are all awaiting his entering the room to take the soul of the speaker. The word onset as defined in Webster's Dictionary is "a setting out; start; beginning." This suggests that the death of the speaker is a beginning of an eternal life in heaven and not necessarily just an end to mortal life. Everyone in the room is expectant of the presence of God to carry the speaker to the this celestial afterlife.

return to the top
The focus is returned to the speaker in the third stanza where it says "I willed my Keepsakes." These keepsakes could be material goods that the speaker collected during life. There will be no use for these goods in heaven so this line discusses the tradition of willing away property and material belonging. As the speaker goes on in this stanza, she discusses the act of having "signed away what portion of me be Assignable." The meaning of this event changes in this line. The word assignable from Webster's is "the ability to give out or allot, as a lesson." From this definition it can be assumed that the speaker hopes to leave the people awaiting her death something other than just material goods. The keepsakes that the speaker hopes to give away become the positive virtues that she possessed during life rather than belongings. She hopes that these virtues will serve as the lesson to those that outlive her. The last line of the stanza reintroduces the fly to the scene. The fly "interposed" which means to come between or intervene.

return to the top
The fly and its purpose are paramount to the final stanza. As previously described, the fly intervenes between the speaker and the light. The fly possesses a "Blue-uncertain stumbling Buzz" that the speaker takes very specific notice of. This earthly insect serves as a reminder or warning that the speaker is soon leaving the earth. The uncertainty of the fly could be symbolic of the speaker's own unsure feelings about death. The stumbling denotes a movement that is lacking in grace or beauty. But the fly, as a creature of God, does possess the beauty of earth that the speaker last sees before dying. The color blue serves as a tranquil and soothing color for the speaker to feel comforted at these last living moments. Many relate heaven to the sky, which is also blue, so this specific color could be an assumption of the state of heaven by the speaker.

return to the top
Dickinson's opinion of death in this poem is not entirely tragic. While it is apparent that both the speaker and the people at her deathbed do feel great loss, Dickinson emphasizes the beginning of a new life and the importance of recognizing the beauty in life. The fly serves as a symbolic inhabitant of earth that is not typically examined for the beauty and grace of God. In this poem, however, the fly is a messenger to the speaker. The fly's presence both comforts and informs the speaker about death and the appreciation of life. By choosing this creature, Dickinson portrays the beauty in every living thing: even the pesky fly has a purpose and a place on earth and in life. The poem also explains what the dying is experiencing, but it strays away from describing pain and fear and concentrates on how the speaker pays close attention to those that will continue to live. The speaker hopes to leaving something significant behind other than just material goods. She also notices that in the surreal moments before death, the stillness in the room encompasses everyone and everything, including even the air that fills the room. These elements work together to expose the beauty and serenity of death.

| Posted on 2005-05-06 | by Approved Guest




Post your Analysis




Message

Free Online Education from Top Universities

Yes! It's true. College Education is now free!







Most common keywords

I heard a fly buzz when I died; Analysis Emily Dickinson critical analysis of poem, review school overview. Analysis of the poem. literary terms. Definition terms. Why did he use? short summary describing. I heard a fly buzz when I died; Analysis Emily Dickinson Characters archetypes. Sparknotes bookrags the meaning summary overview critique of explanation pinkmonkey. Quick fast explanatory summary. pinkmonkey free cliffnotes cliffnotes ebook pdf doc file essay summary literary terms analysis professional definition summary synopsis sinopsis interpretation critique I heard a fly buzz when I died; Analysis Emily Dickinson itunes audio book mp4 mp3 mit ocw Online Education homework forum help



Poetry 195
Poetry 37
Poetry 56
Poetry 177
Poetry 157
Poetry 174
Poetry 151
Poetry 85
Poetry 155
Poetry 16
Poetry 30
Poetry 68
Poetry 210
Poetry 55
Poetry 100
Poetry 119
Poetry 10
Poetry 8
Poetry 216
Poetry 122