Study Guide

The Brain—is wider than the Sky— What's Up With the Title?

By Emily Dickinson

What's Up With the Title?

Ha. Fooled you. This poem has no title. Sorry to disappoint, dear Shmoopers.

Actually, none of Dickinson's poems have titles. One reason is that she never intended to publish most of them. This is not to say that she never intended for them to be read: she shared some of her poems with her family and with a publisher named Thomas Wentworth Higginson. But she didn't expect to see them in books. For some reason, nowadays we can't stand things without titles, so publishers usually title the poem with the first line. In other publications, each poem is given a number. In case you're curious, this little ditty clocks in at #126.