May 15, 1886. In the evening of that day, Emily Elizabeth Dickinson died at the age of 55. She fell into a coma about sixty hours before she died. After she died, it was time to take her to her last resting place.
As explained in the article “Called Back”, Dickinson’s death certificate lists that she died of Bright’s Disease. When she died, it was time to fulfil her last wishes. One wish wasn’t granted by her sister Lavinia. She did not burn all of Dickinson’s writings. Instead, she decided to have her work published. If it wasn’t for her sister, the world would never have the chance to read her beautiful poetry.
Sometimes, her poetry was all about death and immortality. Questions of how she would be remembered are present in many of her poems. There were fewer questions about her last wishes.
Unfortunately, one of the so-called facts is not based on the truth. Yes, Dickinson was buried in a white dress. Some claim that all she wore were white clothes. That is not true or at least, there is no evidence to form a solid basis for this theory.
She was buried in a white coffin, with a casket lining in the same colour and so where the handles. The ribbon that was used was also white.
This coffin was carried out the door of her family home in Amherst (Massachusetts, US) by selected pallbearers. Amongst these selected persons were the president of Amherst College and professors that used to teach her when she attended this educational institute. Once on the graveyard, her coffin was carried by six men who worked for the Dickinson family. Before those who paid their respect to her entered the graveyard, they walked through the flower garden, a barn near the house and went off to West Cemetery.
Emily Dickinson Month
Until the end of December, we are publishing various articles about Emily Dickinson. This is because December is Emily Dickinson Month.