© 2015 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.

CHECK OUT SHMOOP'S FREE STUDY TOOLS: Essay Lab | Math Shack | Videos

I like to see it lap the Miles

I like to see it lap the Miles

  

by Emily Dickinson

Lines 4-7 Summary

Get out the microscope, because we’re going through this poem line-by-line.

Line 4-5

And then — prodigious step Around a Pile of Mountains —

  • After its pit stop, the train goes onward, to step effortlessly around mountains – not just one, but a "pile."
  • We have a great sense of just how massive this locomotive is so far; it's large enough to require tanks of food, and to skip around mountain ranges. 
  • Despite all the animal-like descriptions, this train is certainly no real animal…

Lines 6-7

And supercilious peer
In Shanties — by the sides of Roads —

  • The train "superciliously" (that is, haughtily or condescendingly) looks into the ramshackle buildings by the roadside.
  • Clearly, the speaker can't get enough of personification. The train isn't just a big iron thing—it actually has a personality. 
  • We think that by giving the train a snooty attitude, the speaker might be telling us that she's not totally sold on this new technology. What do you think?

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...

Advertisement
Noodle's College Search
Noodle's College Search
Advertisement
Advertisement