• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

“Poets See the World through Eyes Different from Other People” - How far do you think this comment applies to the work of Sylvia Plath?

Extracts from this document...


"Poets See the World through Eyes Different from Other People" Question: How far do you think this comment applies to the work of Sylvia Plath? Sylvia Plath was one of the leading poets of her time. She was born in Boston and later moved to England where she met and married a leading English poet Ted Hughes. Both her and Hughes were unhappy in their relationship. This lead Plath to become suicidal and paranoid, which reflected in her work. 'Lady Lazarus' was a poem all about her inner pain and frequent suicide attempts. In 1963 she was finally successful and took her own life. One of her many poems clearly illustrates the paranoia Plath felt and her inner pain as she visualises a pleasant task like blackberrying as a dark and twisted world where she is hunted by her enemies, men! Blackberrying Stansa One To open the play Plath uses the word 'nobody'. With one word she has set the scene as a lonely and destitute place. She reinforces this by describing the lane as 'nothing, nothing but blackberries'. This double negative helps to back up the emptiness, solitude and lack of purpose Plath feels in life. ...read more.


Plath is then struck by a fierce wind that she describes as 'sudden' as up till this point she has been sheltered from it. Plath describes how she is attacked by 'phantom laundry', which is in fact the fierce gale. We get the idea that she is on a cliff because she says the 'hills are too green and sweet to have tasted salt'. The cliff that Plath was standing on may have been one near where she lived as she describes how she is at the cliffs 'northern face', she is probably standing on North Devon looking out over the Atlantic. Plath again repeats the words 'nothing, nothing' mirroring line one. This repetition is enforcing the poem's sense of emptiness, its negative flavour. The 'white' sea is contending with the dominant 'pewter' and 'black'. Sandwiched in between are strange colours that are 'lit form within' like green and orange. This gives an unpleasant vision of this hostile sea. 'Silver smiths are beating and beating' at an 'intractable metal'. This line again refers to light coloured metals and beating and beating go with protesting, protesting. In spite of this double activity on the part of nature no effect comes of it. ...read more.


Throughout the poem the mirror is personified and the 'candles and moon' are described as 'liars'. Other techniques Plath uses to bring the poem to life are metaphors and similes, she describes the mirror as 'a little God' and old age as a 'terrible fish'. Both the poems are similar and both reflect almost equally Plath's disturbed mind. They both have a sexual undertone and are both written in first person narrative, they both have underlying metal themes the mirror is 'silver and exact' and blackberries features a whole range of alien metals. In both Plath has a distinct fear of water as it brings death and old age like a 'terrible fish'. The form of setting and discipline of verses are strict in both mirror and blackberrying. Conclusion Poets do definitely see the world through eyes different to other people. This is clearly show as in Plath's world blackberrying is a struggle to survive and mirrors do not show your reflection but your ageing and impending doom. Plath had a hard life and hated the idea of growing old. Most of her inspiration comes from her paranoia and this is shown in both poems. These are just two out of over a hundred of Plath's poems but both are similar and have clear underlying tones, of death and ageing. ?? ?? ?? ?? A.M.D.G 15th December 2001 By Harry Young Page 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Sylvia Plath section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Sylvia Plath essays

  1. Compare the ways in which Plath uses imagery and description in Mirror and Blackberrying, ...

    However this does not bother her because unlike people the berries cannot speak to harm her in any way. She moves on from this to include anthropomorphism by describing the berries as "fat", this is normal terminology for a person or other animal not for a plant, implying again that the berries do have certain almost human qualities.

  2. What happens in the story? Superman and Paula Brown's New Snowsuit is a short ...

    What is particularly alarming is their readiness to spread the story: "...the whole neighbourhood is talking about it." In the developed world today the idea of private property is very important - in some ways our whole society depends on it.

  1. The poems of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes tell the story of lives that ...

    Even the title of the poem suggests the reader that is going to be a poem about an end- the end of her life. Maybe Plath didn't want to kill herself? Maybe that attempt was a desperate cry for help because she was completely destroyed?

  2. How do Hughes and Hardy both use memory in their poems?

    I think he feels helpless, as if he already knows that this relationship is not going to be the best of relationships. He might feel a sense of doom about it, because her scar was so prominent, and it signifies quite a lot about her.

  1. Comparing and contrasting two poems Mirror and Blackberrying by the Author Sylvia Plath.

    From between two hills a sudden wind funnels at me, slapping its phantom laundry in my face" Plath is describing the feel of the wind on her face. I believe that phantom represents a ghostly figure and that it is not there although it feels like it is there.

  2. Comparison of Hughes and Plath -Wuthering Hieghts.

    This technique makes the poem very similar to a story being told and the readers are able to reflect the poet's observations. The language used by Hughes often as a double meaning. 'It was all novel..to you'.

  1. Poetry: Describe, Explain and Analyse The Poems I have chosen to discuss are:Roe-Deer ...

    "And I can't keep away from it. There are no windows so I can't see what is in there. There is only a little grid, no exit. I put my eye to the grid." The poet thinks that she will starve them because she is too afraid to let them free, "They can be sent back.

  2. Compare and contrast Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath's use of language and imagery in ...

    The atmosphere in 'Mirror' is quite a strange one, as it revolves around the mirror's perception of the outside world- which consists of the wall in front of it and the woman who stares at her reflection in the mirror.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work