Literary Criticism

A Loaded Gun: Emily Dickinson for the 21st Century by Jerome Charyn

By Jerome Charyn

“Remarkable perception . . . [a] special meditation/investigation. . . . Jerome Charyn the unpredictable, elusive, and enigmatic is a common fit for Emily Dickinson, the quintessence of these." —Joyce Carol Oates, writer of untamed Nights! and The misplaced Landscape

We imagine we all know Emily Dickinson: the Belle of Amherst, virginal, reclusive, and probably mad. yet in A Loaded Gun, Jerome Charyn introduces us to another Emily Dickinson: the fierce, superb, and sexually charged poet who wrote:

My existence had stood—a Loaded Gun—
Though I than He— may possibly longer live
He longer must—than I—
For i've got however the energy to kill,
Without—the energy to die—

Through interviews with modern students, shut readings of Dickinson's correspondence and handwritten manuscripts, and a suggestive, newly stumbled on picture that's imagined to express Dickinson together with her lover, Charyn's literary sleuthing unearths the good poet in ways in which have basically been hinted at formerly: as a girl who used to be deeply philosophical, intensely engaged with the area, drawn to participants of either sexes, and ready to write poetry that disturbs and delights us today.
Jerome Charyn is the writer of, such a lot lately, sour Bronx: 13 tales, i'm Abraham: a unique of Lincoln and the Civil struggle, and the key lifetime of Emily Dickinson: a unique. He lives in New York.

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Additional info for A Loaded Gun: Emily Dickinson for the 21st Century

Example text

Sometimes the target event is not an action-story. The small story of what the sun and waves do to the sailor, and the small story of what the rain does to the elms and the lake, are spatial events where the causes are not actors but can correspond parabolically to actors in a spatial action-story. Sometimes the target event-story is not clearly spatial or even physical. Consider mental events. They are of course physical in the sense that they consist of neurobiological events, but we rarely if ever conceive of an idea as physi- BODY ACTION 37 cal.

IMAGE SCHEMAS IN THE B R A I N . It is relatively easy to see image schemas at work in behavior and language. To walk in the rain, we must go outside our house-container so we will not be under a roof that stops the rain from falling down onto us, and we must move along a path out of doors. It is harder to locate image schemas at work in the brain, but there are early indications. The cerebellum, for example, has traditionally been recognized as a specialized part of the brain suited for neuronal group patterns whose activation results in sequences of precisely timed and coordinated movement, like throwing a curve ball or touch-typing a common word or playing a theme on the piano.

She imagined that she wanted to be a lawyer, but when she was nearly there, she took a good, hard look at the reality of it and fled. Means to Goals Are Paths to Destinations No avenues have been found to alleviate the suffering. No one knows how to do this; we need a trail-blazer. Progress toward the Goal Is Movement toward the Destination We are getting there. I have been held up by all I have to do, but I will be further along soon. Quicker Means Are Paths That Can Be Traveled More Quickly The quickest way to get this is to buy it at the store.

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