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Analysis and comments on Balloons by Sylvia Plath

[1] 2

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Comment 7 of 14, added on January 14th, 2014 at 2:21 PM.

oh how lovely this poem. So much depth and so moving. Absolutely
splendid! I love the way she describe this balloon. Amazing

Emily from United States
Comment 6 of 14, 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.
~Evan :)

Evan from Canada
Comment 5 of 14, 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

Adeeba from United States

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Information about Balloons

Poet: Sylvia Plath
Poem: Balloons
Volume: The Collected Poems
Year: 1963
Added: Feb 20 2003
Viewed: 5380 times
Poem of the Day: Jun 13 2011

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