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Emily Dickinson was born in Amherst Massachusetts in 1830 and died in 1886 A shy reclusive person Dickinson has come to be known as one of Americas greatest poets Even though only seven of Dickinsons poems were published in her lifetime her poetry was published after her death and was available to the public in 1890 The subjects of her poems were mainly of love death nature immortality and beauty One of Dickinsons better known poems that involves the theme of death would be titled Because I Could Not Stop for Death first published in 1890 In the poem the character of death is personified as a human being which is one of the early examples of Death becoming one of the great characters of literature Often compared to Emily Dickinson the poet Christina Rossetti was born in 1830 in London England and died in 1894 Early illness had a great effect on her poetry As stated by her brother she was compelled even if not naturally disposed to regard this world as a valley of the shadow of death Depressive and reclusive she lived a simple life Like Dickinson Rossettis subjects were mostly love and death The theme of death is present in her final poem shortly before her death entitled Sleeping At Last written in 1894 where death is symbolized through sleep Death is a topic many poets like to explore Even though the two poems Because I Could Not Stop for Death and Sleeping at Last share the theme of death death is presented in two different ways through personification and through symbolism The significance of the theme of death in the two poems is that death is universal because we can all relate to death one way or another Dickinsons poem Because I Could Not Stop For Death describes how the speaker is escorted by Death in his carriage The journey in the carriage is a last ride for the speaker
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