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Dear Sue The Letters of Bessie Collins from Pretoria During the Anglo-Boer War Bessie Collins

Dear Sue The Letters of Bessie Collins from Pretoria During the Anglo-Boer War Bessie Collins

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When Dickinson’s dear friend Sue and her husband Austin, Dickinson’s brother, had their first child (Ned, in 1861), she sent them this poem. I’m not sure why she asks if there are “two” – two what? Maybe it’s a playful way of asking if there weren’t really twins. And of course, “two” rhymes neatly with “Sue.” It was probably a private joke.
            She’s concerned here about “joggling” the new baby and so wonders if she couldn’t just tie him down or put him in a safe container. She’s being quite witty here with shutting the baby up in a “Coffee Cup” or tying him to a pin. The best part, though, is suggesting that Sue might “make him fast” to the cat, Toby.
            All of the diction and rhymes are lighthearted and fun. “tie him to a pin / till I got in –” is pretty cute, as is “shut him up / In a Coffee Cup.” But I like best the slant rhyme of “fast” with “fist – Hist! Whist!” The movement is fast, and we imagine Emily darting over anyway, despite her fears of dandling a newborn.  
Publisher: Protea Book House
Published date: 2000
Page count: 112
Dimensions: Height:24.00 cm
Weight:500g
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