Emily Dickinson

10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886 / Amherst / Massachusetts

Who Occupies This House?

892

Who occupies this House?
A Stranger I must judge
Since No one know His Circumstance—
'Tis well the name and age

Are writ upon the Door
Or I should fear to pause
Where not so much as Honest Dog
Approach encourages.

It seems a curious Town—
Some Houses very old,
Some—newly raised this Afternoon,
Were I compelled to build

It should not be among
Inhabitants so still
But where the Birds assemble
And Boys were possible.

Before Myself was born
'Twas settled, so they say,
A Territory for the Ghosts—
And Squirrels, formerly.

Until a Pioneer, as
Settlers often do
Liking the quiet of the Place
Attracted more unto—

And from a Settlement
A Capital has grown
Distinguished for the gravity
Of every Citizen.

The Owner of this House
A Stranger He must be—
Eternity's Acquaintances
Are mostly so—to me.
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