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My Life had stood - a Loaded Gun Summary & Analysis
by Emily Dickinson

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“My Life had stood a Loaded Gun” is a poem by the 19th-century poet Emily Dickinson. The poem contains one of Dickinson's most iconic images as its first line (and also as its title—because Dickinson didn’t title her poems, they are often referred to by their first lines). Written around 1863, the poem is ambiguous and could be read in a multitude of ways. However, many scholars have agreed on an interpretation of the poem in which the Loaded Gun functions as an extended metaphor for the speaker, while the Owner represents the speaker's inner rage.

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