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Analysis and comments on Anna Who Was Mad by Anne Sexton

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Comment 15 of 105, added on March 9th, 2012 at 12:42 AM.

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Comment 14 of 105, added on March 8th, 2012 at 12:08 PM.

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Comment 13 of 105, added on July 19th, 2011 at 11:03 AM.

Keep on wirting and chugging away!

Jaylin from Peru
Comment 12 of 105, added on February 27th, 2007 at 6:32 PM.

Oh *please* people! Can we stop the amateur psychiatric diagnostics, based
on a *poem*, which is supposed to be impressionistic, and freeform, being
(broadly) "Modern".She was not, by all reports available, schizophrenic.
Sorry about the strident tone, but it annoys the hell outta me that as soon
as we know someone has struggled with any sort of mental illness, we tend
to use that to explain all the parts that we simply have failed to grasp.
Sometimes, we are just don't get a really complex and layered work of art
guys--it doesn't mean she was beyond reason, or that the poem describes
that either.Lazy reading, and lazy thinking, I think. Anne Sexton suffered
from depression, which twice (?)got severe enough to cause nervous
breakdown. That is *not* schizophrenia, and the poem can be read , and
understood, without goimg overboard with some romantic, dramatic and
ultimately lazy fantasy of "madness"(as opposed to the reality--her
particular experience of which I think she describes very "sanely").

Lex from Australia
Comment 11 of 105, added on November 29th, 2005 at 11:41 PM.

I suppose its ok, But it does really freak me out. but it's obviously the
way the Author puts across her thoughts. Creative poem about her life

Shalini from New Zealand
Comment 10 of 105, added on November 28th, 2005 at 7:02 PM.

Schizophrenia as a theme for this poem does not ring true to me.
But it does seem to be asking for help.
Mary, mother of God, help me now in my hour of need, speak to me in my
pillow (dreams) and help me outta this hell!
Also, she is seems to be opining about depression/madness being an
"infection" that one catches from being in close proximity to someone who
is depressed/mad. Or perhaps sent down through the genes as an inherited
She is suffering from the disease as well as the loss of someone she loved.
Anne lost her Nana first mentally through the illness then physically
through the death.
My feeling is that she is describing her suffering and looking for relief
from heaven or earth.

Anna from Canada
Comment 9 of 105, added on November 9th, 2005 at 7:32 PM.

In This poem Anne recognizes her problem of going deeper into the unknown
psyche; she was trying to grasp her illness and wring it out, dry it out,
relieve the sprinkle of oddity; of running to close the door; and never
reaching it; the door to order was open; she could not reach it. Anna's
death caused her never to reach the open door to overcome the dreadful
knowlege of insanity; complete sanity was inside the door... She became
this Aunt in her mind ,and that was to be her early fate. Fabulous Mind,
Her sight of the earthy things, and write about, it is so unique; things
we only talk about in secret... Her reveling ability to do this was
absolute courage without being afraid to expose what really happens to
people. Now peace enters in; she reached the open door in death.

RainDew East from United States
Comment 8 of 105, added on August 24th, 2005 at 10:39 AM.

she's not schizophrenic... she's talking to her maiden aunt, Anna Dingley,
whom she was close with during her adolescence years (until she was 13,when
Anna, or "Nana", went mad), and whose death caused Anne Sexton to face a
major breakdown. i'm doing a research on her, anyone who want to share
infos do e-mail me~

Atique from Malaysia
Comment 7 of 105, added on May 25th, 2005 at 5:52 PM.

she freaks me out

ritza from United States
Comment 6 of 105, added on May 25th, 2005 at 2:45 PM.

I don't really understand how anyone can hate this poem, but even if you
hate it you should appreciate it. This poem screams schizophrenia. When she
says "Speak Mary-words into our pillow," it's obvious. She is alone
physically, crying out for God into her pillow. "I" and "you" are both her.
"I" is confused, wondering how and why she went insane. She is a silent
observer, she doesn't know what is going on. She is trapped in herself.
"You" is the source of her madness, the one being blamed, the other side of
herself, suicidal, knowingly insane, the antagonist. One cannot "Whisper
like a buttercup." She is screaming out her confusion and frustration in
her own head, because no one else can hear her.

Jessica Elise from United States

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Information about Anna Who Was Mad

Poet: Anne Sexton
Poem: Anna Who Was Mad
Added: Feb 20 2003
Viewed: 24257 times
Poem of the Day: Nov 19 2004

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