"Message from the Meadows"
Monthly Newsletter from the Emily Dickinson Museum
Like Trains of Cars on Tracks
     of Plush
I hear the level Bee - 
A Jar across the Flowers goes
Their Velvet Masonry

Withstands until the sweet               Assault
Their Chivalry consumes - 
While He, victorious tilts away
To vanquish other Blooms. 

J. 1224
Reprinted by permission
Quick Links
Support for our annual fund allows us to share the Dickinson legacy with visitors from around the world. 
May 2: Support EDM annual fund on 2017 Valley Gives Day
Lend your support tomorrow, May 2, to the Emily Dickinson Museum on  Valley Gives Day,   a 24-hour giving day that helps nonprofits throughout the Pioneer Valley raise needed funds to support our missions! 
Our goal for 2017 is to raise $15,000 for the Museum's annual fund. Every new gift that day, up to $5,000, will be matched by a member of the Museum's Board of Governors. Your gifts sustain the Museum's tours, lectures, readings, exhibits, educational outreach, and special events, in addition to supporting conservation projects associated with both Dickinson houses and their collections.

Make your donation here .
Calendula pen and ink drawing
by The Bower Studio.
May 4: RHINO Poetry
reading, Bower Studio
at Arts Night Plus
Join us at the Emily Dickinson Museum during Amherst Arts Night Plus on Thursday, May 4, from 5 to 8 pm for our monthly open mic, poetry reading and one-night art exhibit!  

This month's featured reading is part of RHINO Poetry's 40 Readings in 40 Cities initiative marking their 40th anniversary. Our featured readers, Karen Skolfield and Susan Johnson, have both been published in RHINO.  

Our featured artists for May are Vincent Frano and Isa Wang of The Bower Studio in Pelham. The two seek to create functional artwork that encourages environmental stewardship, highlighting the diversity of American flora and fauna.  

The event is free and open to the public.  
Poetry Walk 2014
The poetry walk begins in the Homestead garden. 
May 13: Annual Emily
Dickinson Poetry Walk
The Emily Dickinson Poetry Walk marks the anniversary of the poet's death (on May 15, 1886) with readings of her poetry at historic sites in Amherst. This year, the walk will be held on Saturday, May 13.   
The Poetry Walk begins at 10:30 am in the Homestead garden and proceeds through Amherst, stopping at sites significant in Dickinson's life, and concluding at the poet's grave in West Cemetery.  
At the cemetery, participants are invited to join in the traditional light-hearted toast to the poet and to read a favorite Dickinson poem. The walk lasts about one hour, and is free to all. Learn more here
Discussion leader Bruce Penniman.
May 19: Poetry Discussion Group with Bruce Penniman
Join us on Friday, May 19, at noon in the Center for Humanistic Inquiry for our monthly Emily Dickinson Poetry Discussion Group.

Bruce Penniman will lead the group again in  May with part two of the topic  "Reading Dickinson through Different Critical Lenses." Bruce taught writing, speech, and literature at Amherst Regional High School from 1971 until 2007. He is the site director of the Western Massachusetts Writing Project and lecturer at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and has served as a teacher curriculum mentor in all three NEH Emily Dickinson: Person, Poetry, and Place workshops at the Museum.

The Center for Humanistic Inquiry is on the second floor of Amherst College's Frost Library. The fee for Museum members is $12/session; the fee for non-members is $15/session. Season subscriptions are $75 for Museum members and $100 for non-members. To become a Friend of the Emily Dickinson Museum and enjoy member discounts, click here
Five-week Archaeology Field School at the EDM runs May 30 to July 1  

The Emily Dickinson Museum and UMass Archaeological Services are partnering once again for an archaeology field school May 30 to July 1.

The focus this year will be the Homestead garden and the area where a Dickinson-era barn once stood. Students will earn six credits and learn the fundamentals of field and lab research plus historical interpretation by excavating, processing artifacts, and giving site tours. Applications are due by mid-May. 

For more information, contact Eric Johnson of UMass Archaeological services at ericjohnson@anthro.umass.edu.
June 7-10: Public archaeology program
Have you always wondered what it's like to be an archaeologist, especially one exploring the landscape of America's greatest poet?

In addition to Umass Archaeological Services five-week course,
from June 7 to 10 a public program in archaeology will be offered. The program costs $75 per day. Participants may take part in one, some, or all days of the field school, but the training on Wednesday, June 7, is mandatory. Learn more, and sign up, here.  
Bedroom studio writing sessions featured in 
New York Times article
New York Times reporter Sarah Lyall spent an hour in Emily Dickinson's bedroom as part of the Museum's studio session program last month, and her experiences form the basis of the April 27 article "Home Alone With the Ghost of Emily Dickinson."

"A calm came over me," wrote Lyall, "and I was overtaken by a sharp distilled focus that expressed itself, bizarrely, in a compulsion to write. I did something I hadn't done since elementary school, and never of my own accord: I began to compose a poem."

The stories of several other studio session participants were also included in the article, sharing a unique insight into the inspiration provided by spending time in Dickinson's creative space.  We are currently booking bedroom studio sessions for spring and summer. For more information, visit our webpage here
One of the members of the bee colony set with the task of pollinating the Museum's heirloom orchard.
Orchard in full bloom, 
bees arrive to pollinate
Last spring, an heirloom orchard representative of the one the Dickinson's tended in the 19th century was planted at the Museum. This spring, it's flowered for the first time.

In order to pollinate the orchard, located on the eastern slope of the Homestead garden, a beehive was set in place amongst the trees last week. We hope this is the beginning of many years of fruitful growth, made possible  through a gift in memory of Wendy Borchert Hirtle and her deep appreciation of Emily Dickinson and her poetry. Visit the Museum this week if you get a chance and see the trees in full spring bloom! 
Marta McDowell works in the Homestead garden with a volunteer.
June 2-3: Marta McDowell to lead EDM's Garden Days
Emily Dickinson's Gardens author Marta McDowell returns to the Museum June 2 and 3 to lead our annual Garden Days.

During Garden Days, volunteers help prepare the Museum's gardens for the summer season. More details about this year's schedule are soon to follow.  

Following the relationship between the pen and the trowel led Marta to Emily Dickinson for Emily Dickinson's Gardens and children's author/illustrator Beatrix Potter for Beatrix Potter's Gardening LifeIn 2017, All the Presidents' Gardens, a book that relates the history of American gardening as seen through the White House grounds, made The New York Times bestseller list and won an American Horticultural Society book award.  Marta's latest,  The World of Laura Ingalls Wilder tells the tale of the plants and places of the beloved author of the  Little House  series. Marta also scripted the  Emily Dickinson Museum's landscape audio tour, and was an advisor for the New York Botanical Garden's 2010 show, "Emily Dickinson's Gardens: The Poetry of Flowers."
Join the 1830 Society,
leave a legacy gift for the Emily Dickinson Museum
Create a legacy of support for the Emily Dickinson Museum by joining the 1830 Society.

The 1830 Society is for those who have made pledges to give beyond their lifetimes in supporting the Museum's mission. Learn more about the many ways you can contribute by contacting the development office at (413)542-5084 or development@EmilyDickinsonMuseum.org.
"You and the early flower are forever linked..."
The dandelions started to emerge on the Museum grounds last week, bringing to mind a letter Emily Dickinson sent in May 1852 to her close childhood friend and Amherst Academy classmate Abiah Root, who was in Philadelphia from January through June that year. In it, Dickinson recounted the first time she saw Root at the Academy:

"...with the utmost equanimity you ascended the stairs, bedecked with dandelions, arranged, it seemed, for curls. I shall never forget that scene, if I live to have gray hairs, nor the very remarkable fancies it gave me then of you, and it comes over me now with the strangest bygone funniness, and I laugh merrily. Oh, Abiah, you and the early flower are forever linked to me; as soon as the first green grass comes, up from a chink in the stones peeps the little flower, precious "leontodon," and my heart fills toward you with a warm and childlike fullness! Nor do I laugh now; far from it, I rather bless the flower which sweetly, slyly too, makes me come nearer to you."