We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.

The House

Symbol Analysis

The speaker's last stop and final resting place. The house is a metaphor for the grave. Dickinson wants to enforce the idea that the speaker accepts and is comfortable with dying. She could have described the claustrophobic coffin, but she didn't. She chose a metaphor familiar to the readers to illustrate the calmness of the speaker.

  • Lines 17-20: The speaker can barely make out the house, since it's just a small rise in the ground. Maybe because she is just starting to understand that this house is going to be her grave. We tend to comprehend things better when they have personal significance. The description of the house is pretty limited and seems normal except for the fact that it's underground. Dickinson might keep the description vague on purpose. She wants to use the house as a symbol, but still wants it to make sense on a literal level. If she were to describe the house down to the green shutters and the white picket fence, this might seem a little funny to us, and much less believable. So kudos to Dickinson on "less is more."

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...