Posted by Bob on October 30, 2006
In Reply to: That Perches in the soul posted by Smokey Stover on October 30, 2006
: : What does the exopression "That Perches in the soul" mean?
: : Thank you.
: Why do you capitalize "perches"? It appears to be a verb (which one does not capitalize), and even if it were a noun, it's a common noun. The clause appears to mean, "that sits or rests in the soul." THe antecedent of the clause is something that takes a perch (a seat or a position a bit apart, in real life probably an elevated, sometimes precarious, position) in one's soul--something that stays with you in that place from which emanates the "still, small voice" telling you to do the right thing.
I can't remember if Emily Dickinson capitalized Perches in the original manuscript, but the poem reads:
Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune--without the words,
And never stops at all,
And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
I've heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.