This small poem puts forth an interesting question regarding abnormal behavior. The poem is a lament about how ab’normal’, defined as anything ‘away from normal’ becomes problematic, when normality is often majoritarian. What is normal for the spider, might be chaos for the fly. Besides,
“Normality is a paved road: It’s comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow on it.”Vincent Van Gogh
It is here, that Emily echoes the sentiment of those in history who dared to take the road not taken. The poem has a strong voice of resentment and repressed rage over being reproached for refusing to conform. This sentiment makes this poem, universal and timeless. The poem posits an ageless conundrum of an endless spite between the creative individual and the prejudicial society. It ends with an outcry on how silence and secrecy intimidates people so much that it invites slavery.