in the first stanza, emily dickinson is saying that her soul chooses what environment and setting she is around. she also says that she closes her away from society doesn't show herself. the second and third stanza that emily writes is connected, but what she is saying in them is she is not moving from her place of isolation even tho she is seeing all the events fly by. she sees an emperor kneel at her door. she decided she will let one person in her life and then cut it off harshly.
First stanza annotations
my annotations as I annotated the poem I came across some clues that helped me understand the paragraph, so let me explain what i found. As i went through the first stanza I saw the first line listed, " The Soul selects her own society". I put together that that when she says "her soul" it is meant as her own conscious. then next annotation was imagery. the phrase was, " shuts the Door". I saw this as if she was isolating herself from her society. Next, and also last in the first stanza was the line, "present no more". I saw this as if she was completely pushed away from her society and she was her own majority that in her world.
second stanza annotations
ok so lets start out with the first line of the stanza, "Unmoved- she notes the Chariots- pausing". i listed that unmoved was an imagery annotation. I pictured it as she was just in one place not interacting with anything like she was in shock. Next, the line, "an emperor be kneeling", was listed as a visual because I was able to picture these scene so let me explain what I saw. she watches a chariot coming to her door and kneeling but yet she stays in silence inside her house.
third stanza annotations
I only have one line for this stanza. " close the Valves of her attention- Like Stone. I saw this as just completely shutting out the idea that was put in play before, and of course I will explain. the whole stanza actually sets up this idea. " I've known her- from an ample nation- Choose One- then- Close The Valves of her attention- Like Stone. this is the whole entire stanza, but let me explain what this all means. basically all this is saying is that she will let one other person in her life, and in an instant closing the relationship off completely.
For all that doesn't know what tone is, tone, is the general character or attitude of a place, piece of writing, situation, etc. The tone of this poem would have to be relaxed and also it could be seen as passive. all of the times where it shuts her out of society but yet doesn't physically hurt anyone would make this poem passive.