Study Guide

Tell all the truth but tell it slant — Setting

By Emily Dickinson


Where are we? We're not really sure. Our best guess is we're in the headspace of a reclusive twenty-something woman from the late 1800s. That's right; we're all up in Emily Dickinson's brain. It's not as weird as it sounds. Many of Dickinson's poems are musings on deep ideas like love, death, grief, longing, and in this case, truth.

Reading this poem is like having a front row seat to watch the inner workings of one of America's most revered and talented artists. Enjoy the view, or failing that (since, you know, there's not much of anything to look at here), enjoy the conversation.