Psychological Analysis of "A Narrow Fellow in the Grass" and "O to Be A Dragon"

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  8
Wordcount:  2148 Words
Date:  2022-11-07


Emily assumes the position of a male speaker in this poem. Most of her poems focus on the same idea of death together with life after death (Pollak, 2016). However, the poem focuses on the animal world. The Narrow Fellow in the Grass talks as a man, when he recalls his experience with the serpent when he was a boy, on the other hand, he does not disclose the reason why he is doing this. The poem is among the few that were printed when the author was still alive, even though it was published when she was still alive she was not the one who published it but her sister-in-law. Although it is not clear whether Dickinson was unhappy with her sister-in-law publishing her poem, in the poem that she wrote after this, entitled Publication is the Auction. She likens the making of money by publishing and selling her poems with fornicating her soul. This by itself shows that she was not happy with the act that her sister-in-law did. This explains the reason why most of the poems of Dickinson that were published when she was still life were sent to journals and others published by the household members and the helpers without the acquaintance of Dickinson.

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

From the way, Dickson describes the narrow fellow in the first line if the first stanza it is not easy for the reader to know who the narrow fellow is. However, from the way she paints him as a narrow person the reader can accept that this is a thin folk who is just sleeping on the grass. From her description, she says that the narrow fellow takes most of the time lying on the grass, but he rides occasionally. Even though the persona does not give details about the riding snake, the reader can point out from the description that the speaker is talking about a human being who is thin. The speaker also says that the notice about the narrow fellow is quite sudden, this, therefore, means that she notices another fellow very sudden and on the same way someone also notices her so sudden as well. When the persona says that the narrow fellow dives and likens him with a comb and that the narrow fellow has a spotted shaft, this the point where the reader is now, sure that the speaker is talking about the snake and not a thin human being. You realize that in the first lines of the first stanza the speaker tries to confuse the reader to think and picture about a human being who is very thin, these lines are meant to make to surprise the reader when she realizes that, the poem is talking about a real snake and not a human being. When the persona talks about the snake closing your feet in the first stanza of the poem, this makes the reader figure himself or herself in the shoes of the speaker and feel exactly what the persona has also felt at the meeting of the serpent. He finishes by saying that the snake slithers away after circling in your (reader's) feet.

In the second stanza of Emily's poem, the speaker begins by saying that, the snake likes a boggy acre (Parkin-Gounelas, 2018). This means that this snake likes a swampy place that is cool and soft that makes it for him to slither. He goes on and says that, this snake a floor that is cool as well as white marshes. The speaker personifies the snake when she uses like. From the beginning, the persona gives the serpent the characters of a human by calling it a narrow fellow and also saying that the fellow rides occasionally. He further personifies the snake by saying that it like some conditions as if the snake is a human being. In the third line of the second stanza, it is clear that a speaker is a man who is remembering being a young boy. This is the point at which the reader realizes that the speaker in the poem and the author of the poem are two different people. The author has chosen to write a poem on a male speaker, who narrates his experiences as he encounters a snake as he is running on the grass barefooted. This experience according to the speaker occurred more than once, and according to the speaker he used to encounter the snake at noon. The creature according to the speaker looked like whiplash. The speaker recalls stooping to see as a young a man. However, when the speaker focused on taking it he says that it crumpled and it was gone was about to grasp it.

In the third stanza of Emily's poem, the speaker is trying to show the reader that she understands the different natures of people (Arckens, 2016). From the first and the second stanza the speaker has already personified the snake, now in the third stanza, the speaker is trying to say that, the snake is one of the nature of human beings. Besides the speaker saying that he knows the different natures of people he also says that the natures also know him as well. This line reveals to the reader that, the speaker has a connection with animals, something that a lot of human beings don't have. The speaker in this stanza is saying that he recognizes the natures and the natures recognize him as well. The speaker his saying in this stanza that, he shares the feelings with nature's human beings with the natures whereby the serpent is one of the animals. The speaker claims that he feels exactly the way the animals feel. This statement further personifies the snake and the animals by saying that they feel the way people feel.

The reader at this point will tend to think that, this is what exactly took place when the speaker met the snake, perhaps the snake wanted to greet the speaker, but then it ended up slithering away. In the fifth stanza of the third stanza, the author has used the word but, this means that the persona does not experience the same way he experiences to other animals to the snake. The speaker says that although he understands the natures as they recognize him as well, he says that, there is no time he has met the snake without feeling a lot of fear. This enables the reader to now create a picture of a snake at his or her feet while he or she is in the field. The reader at this point wears the shoes of the speakers and feels the fear that the speaker feels when he meets the snake at the field. However, the speaker from the first stanza up this the third stanza does not tell whether the snake, he is talking about is dangerous or not.

On the other hand, the reader can relate the feeling of fear that, he or she feels when she or meets the snake at the field and conclude that, the snake that the speaker is talking about in this poem is dangerous (Herrmann, 2018). The snakes many a time are very fast in that one cannot find a chance to look at them and tell if they are dangerous or not. The speakers described an incidence when he was a young boy when he met the snake, he stoops to catch it, but he was not able to because the snake was too fast and it disappeared before he could catch it. From the descriptions that the speaker, has provided in this poem is not easy to tell when the speaker experienced the fear after encountering the snake but, from the look of things it may be during that time when he was a young boy when he encountered the snake and tried to catch the snake, but he was not able. Here the author gives the reader a room for interpretation.

It is evident that the narrow fellow in the grass is a snake. This snake is looked from the eyes of a child. The snake appears, but it also disappears very fast to the extent that it is mistaken to a whip, besides that it also eludes the understanding of the reader. As the snake moves through the grass and later slithering makes the speaker fear so much. In as much as the speaker say that he is familiar with a lot of animals we realize that he was a boy at the point. Afterward, we are told from the poem that he could not meet the snake without being rendered short of breath, even when he is in the company of other people. Since this poem is about something that is mistaken for something else, it also shows how Dickinson also makes readers mistaken other a word for another.

Later, after the boy had grown to a man, he must have discovered that the snake was dangerous and he may have lost his life. On the same note, he may have overheard of a comrade or even a family member who may have hurt by a venomous serpent bite. The speaker does not say this, but the readers can conclude from the fact that, the speaker did not meet the snake after that first meeting when he was a boy without fearing. The author uses the word in the last line of the third stanza. This may depict the blankness that the persona goes through whenever he meets the serpent. On the other and the speaker can also interpret the emptiness to mean that, the speaker might have lost a friend or a relative from a snake bite. Therefore, this is the reason as to why the speaker feels empty and fearful when he meets a snake. This might also be a reason as to why the speaker is not feeling the same feeling, he is feeling for other animals for the snake.

Another crucial thing to note from the poem of Marianne is that in the 1800s and part of the 1900s females in America was an intimidating task (Mattingly, 2018). What was even harder during these times was educating females. Females during these times had their places in the kitchen, baking bread, giving birth and taking care of the children. However, despite all these intimidations, Emily Dickinson and Marianne Moore were able to raise their heads and challenged the intimidations that the females were going through putting their pens on the papers and wrote great messages that were awaiting the right time to be unraveled. Most people today including the scholars view the poetic work of the two ladies as being feminist, but then through thorough psychological analysis. One can uncover the hidden messages so that one can understand and appreciate the efforts that, the two women put in fighting the female intimidation in the then America that was dominated by men. The two female poets served as voices for several other women in America who were being intimidated by men. Emily and Marianne through their poems they provide a very good example of how a psychological analysis can make, a reader to understand the message of the author. Although these two female poets are the most prominent feminist in America, their symbolism is understood through a deep psychological analysis. Their poems are rich in symbolism as well as metaphors. This is what they both share in common in addressing the intimidations that the women are going through in America.


The fine fellow poem by Emily has messages of sex from the beginning to the end, what can be termed as sexual innuendos (Zhang, 2018). When the reader reads this poem for the first time some of the words that, the author uses stands out to be so unusual, the example of the words is the ride, shaft as well as wrinkled. These words are not to appear in the poem since the poem is about the snake. This shows that some words are hidden in the poem but then, they mean different things and for a reader to understand them entirely them one has to analyze them psychologically. The word rides that are in the second line in the first stanza shows the physical encounter of sex. Coming to line five and line six of the first stanza you will also realize that the author has shown a lot of bravery by using the name shaft, which is another name for the penis. The truth is that then these two women were able to reach so many people through the poems and even years later after their death, through careful and thorough psychological analysis. Readers of their work have come to understand their work and appreciate the work that they did in ensuring that women in America are also given, an equal chance to education and many other thing...

Cite this page

Psychological Analysis of "A Narrow Fellow in the Grass" and "O to Be A Dragon". (2022, Nov 07). Retrieved from

Free essays can be submitted by anyone,

so we do not vouch for their quality

Want a quality guarantee?
Order from one of our vetted writers instead

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the ProEssays website, please click below to request its removal:

didn't find image

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism