Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Morning Song, Sylvia Plath

There's a very certain feeling I encounter get when reading Plath. I read this poem today for the first time in years, and it has been at least 6 months since I've read any other Plath. I almost forgot what it felt like. It is singular and lifting. It inspires me almost instantly. Her voice is so strong, so clear—even when its delusional—and it never fails to move me.

Love set you going like a fat gold watch.
The midwife slapped your footsoles, and your bald cry
Took its place among the elements.

Our voices echo, magnifying your arrival. New statue.
In a drafty museum, your nakedness
Shadows our safety. We stand round blankly as walls.

I'm no more your mother
Than the cloud that distills a mirror to reflect its own slow
Effacement at the wind's hand.

All night your moth-breath
Flickers among the flat pink roses. I wake to listen:
A far sea moves in my ear.

One cry, and I stumble from bed, cow-heavy and floral
In my Victorian nightgown.
Your mouth opens clean as a cat's. The window square

Whitens and swallows its dull stars. And now you try
Your handful of notes;
The clear vowels rise like balloons.

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