Monday, August 24, 2009

Flexing my English major muscles

I wouldn't consider myself a rabid Emily Dickinson fan, but this one poem of hers has been knocking around my head for at least the last two years, and I think it sums up my views of what I want out of a job (not to mention my life) much better than I ever could:

I dwell in Possibility--
A fairer House than Prose--
More numerous of Windows--
Superior--for Doors--

Of Chambers as the Cedars--
Impregnable of Eye--
And for an Everlasting Roof
The Gambrels of the Sky--

Of Visitors--the fairest--
For Occupation--This--
The spreading wide my narrow Hands
To gather Paradise--

I wrote an op-ed about this poem for my college's newspaper a couple of years ago, and I find my assumption that I'd have my pick of job offers simultaneously cute and pathetic, sort of like in elementary school, when I was convinced I could make a fortune by mashing up mountain laurel petals and selling them as perfume. (In case you're wondering, crushed flower petals stuffed into water bottles do not make perfume. They make a wilted, stinky mess.) But I still stand by the words I wrote. I still believe--perhaps more strongly than ever, now--that I have a moral obligation to the greatest amount of good I can do. And although I'm no longer counting on Paradise, I am spreading wide my hands, waiting for something to fall into them.


  1. Lizzie, you're so awesome that I want to be just like you.

  2. Here are two connections for you in SF from my outreach:

    We have an associate events/communications job available...she should apply!

    Daniel Lurie
    Tipping Point Community

    I met today with Chris Balme, Co-Founder of Spark ( He said Spark has a Program Coordinator job that he's having trouble filling, and that you should apply. You should call him at (415) 626-5470


  3. Tito, thanks! But I think it would be weird if you were just like me, because then who would be just like you?

    And, Milton, you are a mensch among men. I cannot even begin to tell you how much I appreciate all the contacts and opportunities you've passed along. Thank you!!