Comment 6 of 6, added on January 15th, 2012 at 6:30 PM.
The way she describes the balloons as "Oval Soul Animals" and etc.. is
really interesting. This seems to be in her usual style of perceiving
unordinary details and characteristics in ordinary objects. It is an
expression of her fantastic imagination that twists reality into something
else. Therefore describing the balloons as creatures that "have been living
with us since christmas," and who "give a shriek and a pop when attacked"
She also describes them as delightful and mysterious and, in her own words,
"queer." They delight the "heart like wishes" in a way and she compares
this to how a peacock leaves a bright and colorful feather on the ground.
In other words they provoke the imagination and decorate their surroundings
and then this is related in the scene with the child and the balloon, where
he is intrigued by the red imaginative world he sees through the balloon
and then when it pops he contemplates a "clear world." This can perhaps
show a contrast between the dream-like state of childhood to the harshness
of objective reality.
The "red shred in his fist" maybe is either meant to give some morbid
imagery to the dead corpse of what she described as empty creatures, or the
representation of broken childhood dreams, or something to that affect.
Just some opinions, not laid out as properly as it could have been but I
hope it helps some people in interpreting the poem regardless.
Comment 5 of 6, added on May 17th, 2008 at 3:05 PM.
An odd quality in this poem is the airy effect given by the use of
enjambments and incomplete thoughts in each line. It is as if the poem
itself were a balloon. This poem seems to reflect a common theme in Plath's
poetry: the loss of innocence, which is marked by the popping of the
balloon in the second to last stanza. Out of curiosity, the baby bites into
it and the balloon pops, and all that remains is "A red/ Shred in his
little fist". The use of alliteration and onomatopoeia also enhances the
balloon quality of this poem. The fact that a balloon is filled with air
makes it seem that such innocence is substance-less and therefor
superficial. I believe that this poem represents how temporary childhood
from United States
Comment 4 of 6, added on February 15th, 2006 at 3:07 AM.
I dont understand.. how is balloons about Plath being pregnant with her
Comment 3 of 6, added on January 22nd, 2006 at 3:58 PM.
Its not just about balloons though is it. Its about Plath being pregnant
with her baby daughter
Kate from United Kingdom
Comment 2 of 6, added on July 13th, 2005 at 2:14 PM.
it is rather amaizing!!! how she has managed to write such joy devised from
such i simple object. Every time iread this poem i can't help but laugh a
little. Sheer genius!
katie from United Kingdom
Comment 1 of 6, added on January 26th, 2005 at 4:34 PM.
I can't believe such a genius poem was written about Balloons! Plath is/was
tuly, TRULY a genius.
from United States