Emotional Insight from Robert Frost’s “Love and a Question”

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One of the things I do regularly on this site is to post big, easy-to-get-with examples of emotional insight. Emotional insight conveys a meaning that can only be grasped using your emotional ability. Here’s another great example, from Robert Frost. Love and a Question by Robert Frost A stranger came to the door at eve, And he spoke the bridegroom … Read More

Kick-Ass Emotional Insight from Dylan Thomas

Vik RubenfeldPoem1 Comment

(Image via Black Spruce Hound) I’ve posted previously about how a work of art communicates a meaning that only your emotional ability can appreciate. Today’s Dylan Thomas poem, “In My Craft or Sullen Art”, is a great example. In My Craft Or Sullen Art by Dylan Thomas In my craft or sullen art Exercised in the still night When only … Read More

This One Sneaks Up On You

Vik RubenfeldPoem1 Comment

This one sneaks up on you and then delivers a really powerful emotional insight in the last lines.  It’s by Robert Frost. It doesn’t matter what it’s called – the title’s just a fakeout so you won’t see the end of it coming. (It’s called “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”). At first it seems like it’s very tame, … Read More

Bet You Didn’t Know They Talked About Sex Like This in the 1800’s (Emotional Insight from Walt Whitman)

Vik RubenfeldPoem3 Comments

If you’ve ever thought about writing, you’ve probably wondered if you could describe what sex feels like. Well, Walt Whitman, the poet, had a shot at it in the freaking 1800’s. Don’t we all have the impression that nobody talked about sex until, like, 1960 or something like that? Not so. Walt Whitman had a surprisingly frank take on it … Read More

Emotional Insight from T.S. Eliot’s “Love Song”

Vik RubenfeldPoem1 Comment

As you may have noticed, what I’m trying to do here is provide very punchy, powerful, easy-to-get-with emotional insights.  Lots of great poems, plays and novels have beautiful stretches in them that lead up to, or include, something brief and powerful. I’m looking for these moments to feature in blog posts on this site. Similarly, with paintings, music and sculpture, … Read More

An Example of Emotional Insight from Emily Dickinson

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The diction here is a bit of a push for us – not because of the words used, which are all quite familiar – but just because poets used to take a lot of poetic license in pushing diction around all over the place to fit the meter and the rhythm and the rhyme and so on and so forth. … Read More


Vik RubenfeldPoem2 Comments

Nothing is more fundamental to the subject at hand, than the question of what it is that art communicates. My teacher, the great Mrs. Bettina Olivier, taught that: Art is form; art is the form of emotional insight. Emotional insight communicates the emotion, and the meaning of the emotion. Let’s think about that for a second: “the meaning of the emotion.” … Read More