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Imagery in A Narrow Fellow in the Grass

Imagery Examples in A Narrow Fellow in the Grass:

A Narrow Fellow in the Grass


"Yet when a Boy, and Barefoot..."   (A Narrow Fellow in the Grass)

Notice that we are given a description of our speaker for the first time here. The word “Boy” tells us that the speaker is male and describing an experience he had in his youth. The fact that the speaker is both young and “Barefoot” also underscores the speaker’s innocence and vulnerability. Dickinson thus makes the encounter with the snake seem more frightening and sinister. The imagery of a snake slithering across a “Barefoot” is particularly distressing and unsettling.

"And opens further on— ..."   (A Narrow Fellow in the Grass)

Notice the imagery of the grass covering up the snake so that the speaker only sees flashes of the snake. The snake is almost invisible and ghostly, moving underfoot in near secrecy though his presence is palpable for the speaker. This movement is untraceable, meaning that his appearances are even more shocking. Dickinson’s imagery here thus makes the snake seem even more sly and menacing.

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