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Anne Sexton - Sylvia's Death

for Sylvia Plath
O Sylvia, Sylvia, 
with a dead box of stones and spoons, 
with two children, two meteors 
wandering loose in a tiny playroom, 
with your mouth into the sheet, 
into the roofbeam, into the dumb prayer, 
(Sylvia, Sylvia 
where did you go 
after you wrote me 
from Devonshire 
about rasing potatoes 
and keeping bees?) 
what did you stand by, 
just how did you lie down into? 
Thief -- 
how did you crawl into, 
crawl down alone 
into the death I wanted so badly and for so long, 
the death we said we both outgrew, 
the one we wore on our skinny breasts, 
the one we talked of so often each time 
we downed three extra dry martinis in Boston, 
the death that talked of analysts and cures, 
the death that talked like brides with plots, 
the death we drank to, 
the motives and the quiet deed? 
(In Boston 
the dying 
ride in cabs, 
yes death again, 
that ride home 
with our boy.) 
O Sylvia, I remember the sleepy drummer 
who beat on our eyes with an old story, 
how we wanted to let him come 
like a sadist or a New York fairy 
to do his job, 
a necessity, a window in a wall or a crib, 
and since that time he waited 
under our heart, our cupboard, 
and I see now that we store him up 
year after year, old suicides 
and I know at the news of your death 
a terrible taste for it, like salt, 
(And me, 
me too. 
And now, Sylvia, 
you again 
with death again, 
that ride home 
with our boy.) 
And I say only 
with my arms stretched out into that stone place, 
what is your death 
but an old belonging, 
a mole that fell out 
of one of your poems? 
(O friend, 
while the moon's bad, 
and the king's gone, 
and the queen's at her wit's end 
the bar fly ought to sing!) 
O tiny mother, 
you too! 
O funny duchess! 
O blonde thing!

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Added: Feb 20 2003 | Viewed: 25514 times | Comments and analysis of Sylvia's Death by Anne Sexton Comments (5)

Sylvia's Death - Comments and Information

Poet: Anne Sexton
Poem: Sylvia's Death
Year: Published/Written in 1963
Poem of the Day: Jan 17 2008

Comment 5 of 5, added on July 6th, 2010 at 2:32 PM.

Sylvia Plath once said about Anne Sexton's poems:
'...her poems are wonderfully craftsmanlike poems and yet they have a kind of emotional and psychological depth which I think is something perhaps quite new, quite exciting.'


Emile Moelich
Comment 4 of 5, added on November 20th, 2009 at 1:39 PM.
anne sexton

so i have no idea what this poem is about and i have to write a paper on it. She sucks.

dylan thorton from Bangladesh
Comment 3 of 5, added on April 11th, 2006 at 1:47 PM.

This poem is amazing, the emotions just jump right out at you and suck you in. You can feel the desperation and the jealosy that Sylvia got out. It's completely beautiful and unbelievable, Anne's style just captivates me in the wonder and the beauty.

Gemma from United States

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