The Single Hound

XIV. Perception Of An Object Costs


Perception of an
Object costs
A lot—let us say, X.
Perception in itself a gain
Replying to its price, Y;
The Object Absolute is Z,
Perception sets it fair.
Alas! I know not good formulae
To express these amounts to thee!


The 1924 version of this somewhat inscrutable poem has this same odd break between the first and second line. In most other versions, the two lines are combined, as Dickinson seems to have intended it. You can see an original handwritten copy here.

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