12 I had a guinea golden

Written summer 1858. I love committing to do one poem a day like this – they’re all so timely, as if each poem were meant exactly for each day. Maybe I’m only looking for signs, but I do prefer this to reading a horoscope. Enjoy –


I had a guinea golden –
I lost it in the sand –
And tho’ the sum was simple
And pounds were in the land –
Still, had it such a value
Unto my frugal eye –
That when I could not find it –
I sat me down to sigh.

I had a crimson Robin –
Who sang full many a day
But when the woods were painted –
He – too – did fly away –
Time brought me other Robins –
Their ballads were the same –
Still, for my missing Troubadour
I kept the “house at hame”.

I had a star in heaven –
One “Pleiad” was it’s name –
And when I was not heeding,
It wandered from the same –
And tho’ the skies are crowded –
And all the night ashine –
I do not care about it –
Since none of them are mine –

My story has a moral –
I have a missing friend –
“Pleiad” it’s name – and Robin –
And guinea in the sand –
And when this mournful ditty
Accompanied with tear –
Shall meet the eye of traitor
In country far from here –
Grant that repentance solemn
May seize opon his mind –
And he no consolation
Beneath the sun may find.

[Emily Dickinson]

You may have noticed that she tends to use the contraction “it’s,” even when it seems it should be the possessive form “its”. Read into this; she was extraordinarily intentional with her work.

Serenity and kindness –


About the author

Bethany Ramus

Bethany | ביתענה – household of response, occupation, affliction, and Divine Presence.

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