La poesia americana. Emily Dickinson

Nella seconda metà dell’Ottocento emergono negli stati Uniti due importanti personalità poetiche tra loro profondamente diverse: Walt Whitman ed Emily Dickinson.

La Dickinson (1830-1886), dalla personalità votata al ripiegamento su sé stessa nella considerazione dei conflitti e delle contraddizioni del suo tempo e nelle tensioni oniriche della sua anima, visse quasi sempre nella sua casa paterna nel Massachusetts ad Amherst. Ridusse al minimo le sue esperienze, senza neanche sposarsi, per vivere a pieno la sua vita interiore.

La sua passione per la poesia è poco nota e gran parte delle sue liriche furono conosciute solo molti anni dopo la sua morte. Addirittura la loro prima edizione risale al 1955.

Nella sua produzione poetica vive con enfasi drammatica la contraddizione tra pessimismo puritano e ottimismo panico, tra una concezione della natura distruttrice, e una vitale e felice, tra la negazione razionale di Dio e il bisogno di lui.

Nonostante questi conflitti culturali comunque la Dickinson si muove attraverso pochi nuclei tematici essenziali: la morte, l’amore, la natura. Crea a partire da questi temi suggestive immagini e simboli, trasgredendo i “miti” americani dando loro una visione eretica e irregolare.

La sua carica trasgressiva è evidente anche nelle anomalie grafiche, metriche, ritmiche, lessicali e sintattiche della sua poesia. I suoi componimenti sono caratterizzati da una certa visionarietà razionale che trasfigura i particolari concreti di partenza e crea delle vere e proprie atmosfere allucinatorie.


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 the 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 windows failed, and then

I could not see to see.

In questa poesia è possibile vedere come la Dickinson attraverso il ronzio della mosca, elemento dissonante in una scena di morte, dona alla visione della propria morte un carattere di concretezza e insieme di allucinazione, e quasi di sogno funesto e irritante. E’ qui che si manifesta la particolarità dello stile poetico di Emily Dickinson.

Maura Ricci

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