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A Short Analysis of Emily Dickinson’s ‘A little Dog that wags his tail’

The meaning of Dickinson’s great dog poem

‘A little Dog that wags his tail’ is not one of Emily Dickinson’s best-known poems, so a few words of analysis may help to clarify its meaning. It starts off sounding as though it’s going to be a dog poem – a sort of companion-piece to Dickinson’s celebrated poem about a cat – but then it quickly turns into a poem about something else entirely…

A little Dog that wags his tail
And knows no other joy
Of such a little Dog am I
Reminded by a Boy

Who gambols all the living Day
Without an earthly cause
Because he is a little Boy
I honestly suppose – Read the rest of this entry