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With David Emery and Rich Hilliard
The iconic American poet Emily Dickinson craved pointed reviews of her work. Here is how she asked for one from a literary confidant in 1862 (Weeks and Flint 1957):
Mr. Higginson, Are you too deeply occupied to say if my verse is alive?
The mind is so near itself it cannot see distinctly, and I have none to ask.
Should you think it breathed, and had you the leisure to tell me, I should feel quick gratitude.
If I make the mistake, that you dared to tell me would give me sincerer honor toward you.
I inclose [sic] my name, asking you, if you please, sir, to tell me ...