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Analysis and comments on Morning Song by Sylvia Plath

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Comment 30 of 140, added on July 9th, 2012 at 9:10 AM.

qkO1eW Very informative article post.Much thanks again. Great.

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Comment 29 of 140, added on March 20th, 2012 at 6:54 PM.

Im grateful for the blog article.Thanks Again. Cool.

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Comment 28 of 140, added on March 20th, 2012 at 6:54 PM.

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Comment 27 of 140, added on March 9th, 2012 at 2:15 AM.

Yi1trf Very neat blog article.Thanks Again. Much obliged.

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Comment 26 of 140, added on December 21st, 2010 at 3:22 PM.

i think this poem is amazing. She is not being cold at all. when she says
that our voicves echo, magnifying your arrival. new statue. in a drafty
museumj, your nakedness shadows our safety. we stand round blankly as
walls. is saying her baby is the art that is holding her eye. its the
artwork she wants to protect and admire. and it is the art she is admiring.
read your own, sylvia. its explains how sylvia plath. she was not selfish.
not even with the suicide attempts. she was lost. her husband and her did
not get along at all and got a divorce. she stayed with her children and
loved them each dearly. she miscarried once and immediately tried for
another baby soon after. this gave her her son nick. the book your own
sylvia explains this to us in a series of poems about her growing up and
dating and how family tensions within her husbands side of the family
towards her were a heavy burden on her. Since she was young she was seeking
love and by saying that she admired her child and protected it like the
museum would she is showing she has someone to love now. She is making her
baby everything to her. Her children in life were the things that inspired
her in poetry. so did giving birth to such amazing human beings. She is a
person who people get the wrong idea about. she was not a bad person. just
confused and wanting love.

Dagmar from United States
Comment 25 of 140, added on May 3rd, 2010 at 12:00 AM.
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Milk Introduce,high anyway variety answer interpretation famous not hurt
library result size telephone imply parent membership very approach
personal switch paper rule why hole common ball month secondary up look
detail notice brief comparison past industrial food couple may release
magazine opportunity quiet lean need consequence aim wish hence together
continue employee measure teach before round her present remind religion
cell belief procedure expense describe bit motor what talk chance including
need distinction university give economy neck program institute experiment
court beyond site status total pay teaching comparison

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Comment 24 of 140, added on May 30th, 2009 at 8:28 PM.

This is possibly one of the most moving and truthful poems on becoming a
new mother. Who among us who have had children can forget the intense inner
turmoil, fear,love, feeling of loss of one's identity, the rawness of one's
own body as compared to the radiant perfection of the newborn baby, the
sense of mystery and inhabited us in the aftermath of giving birth? What I
also appreciate is the total lack of sentimentality. Wasn't it Norman
Mailer who said that "sentimentality is for those who have no true
sentiment"? So what if the poem stems from Plath's depression? So much of
art stems from torment and self-doubt and that fact is not reductive -
rather the opposite when we think of Goya and Donne for example. Motherhood
walks a the tightrope of bliss and fear from the very first moment and
Plath captures that truth wonderfully.

Sonya White-Domergue from France
Comment 23 of 140, added on May 29th, 2009 at 1:12 AM.

I really don't like reading this poem, I find it so disturbing. i don't
think this is a poem about the joys of being a mother etc etc... I think
this is an expression of her detachment from her child which I think is the
saddest idea in the world. The bond between a mother and child should be
strong an beautiful but in "Morning Song" the baby is objectified: "New
Statue." Even the act of making the baby has a satirical tone, destroying
the so called most beautiful act of love: "Love set you going like a fat
gold watch." The beginning of the child's life is not special and
miraculous, but simply a process. "The miswife slapped your footsoles" -
raw, harsh. This complements the next line: "Your bald cry/ Took its place
among the elements." Elements - raw, harsh. The text has the feeling of
tiredness and antiquity, which is wrong! Its a new baby! "New Statue/ In a
drafty museum" and "Your moth breath."

Eleanor from Australia
Comment 22 of 140, added on May 29th, 2009 at 1:13 AM.

This poem raises a concept that emerged largely after WWII: That numbness
can be an emotion. In other words, this poem is not so much emotionless,
despite Plath's evident numbness due to shock and anxiety.

"We stand 'round blankly as walls." ~ Blank walls are ready to have
something new written on them.

"The cloud that distills a mirror to reflect its own/ slow/ Effacement at
the wind's hand." This is analogical of her life and how she sees her baby.

Carly from Australia
Comment 21 of 140, added on November 20th, 2008 at 1:24 PM.

The poem “Morning Song,” deals with the ambivalent feeling of a woman in
her new role as a mother. Undoubtedly, the baby is a part of her life, but
she feels her infant stranger and foreign as the very first image of the
conception of the baby reveals. Since the mother claims that love has
caused the baby’s arrival in this elemental world, she suggests the
mechanical sexual union between her and baby’s father as he does not appear
anywhere except in the reminiscences of the mother. She says, “Love set you
going like a fat gold watch.” It also reveals her hidden desire to own the
child who belongs to the father’s clan and not to hers. Once biologically
freed from its own mother with the severance of placenta, the baby acquires
its autonomy and different individuality. Here the midwife, by slapping the
newborn baby’s foot soles, has placed it in the atmospheric elemental world
where it will also be socialized by patriarchal notions.

In the second stanza, the child, being compared to “new statue” located
carefully in a “drafty museum,”-- a place for dead and stiffed things, not
in the cozy home, suggests the vulnerability of the mother regarding her
small child. She is scared of the wintry season, which may cause harm to
her dear one. Here the double bind situation of mother causing emotional
and psychic poignancy has been revealed. On the one hand, she feels that it
is cold as a statue in the museum that requires no comfort and as she looks
at its nakedness, she becomes vulnerable for its safety on the other as she
says, “Your nakedness / Shadows our safety.”
In the third stanza, the woman tears off the imposed mask of motherhood by
comparing herself with the floating clouds in the sky broken in rain to
became a mirror lake, which reflects the gradual disappearing of the clouds
at wind’s hand. Although she has delivered the baby as a cloud produces
rain, which in turn becomes a mirror-lake to reflect the extinction of
cloud with the gust of the wind. She does not want to be credited with the
honor of being a mother and identifies herself with the floating clouds,
free to move in the open sky and to break themselves in rain at their own
whim. The wind is suggestive of the primeval energy pushing her to see her
real self in the mirror lake by dissolving her stereotypical image of
Virgin Mary feeding her baby Christ.
I’m no more your mother
Than the cloud that distills a mirror to reflect its own slow
Effacement at the wind’s hand.
In the next stanza, the setting is changed from the museum to the bedroom
where the baby is sleeping, but the mother cannot sleep because of her
caring nature. The breath of the baby is expressed as moth breath; this
comparison gives an idea of the speed and regularity of the baby’s as it
sleeps. As moths are characterized by the fast and constant movement of
their wings and are nocturnal insects. In the next stanza, the setting is
changed from the museum to the bedroom where the baby is the mother cannot
sleep because of her caring nature. The breath of the baby is expressed as
moth breath; this comparison gives an idea of the speed and regularity of
the baby as it sleeps. As moths are characterized by the fast and constant
movement of their wings and are nocturnal insects. This image of the
nocturnal insect in connection to the baby’s breath reminds the
vulnerability of a fragile female in the gothic horror movies where the
demonic spirit enters the body of someone to execute his monstrous and
atrocious intention. Now the mother is the victim of her own baby who
flickers under her blanket with pink roses decorated on it. Since the
mother cannot sleep, she listens to the upheavals of the rising and falling
of sea waves suggestive of the inner turmoil to resent everything
pertaining to this mundane routine life in this gender-biased world, but in
the meantime the child begins to weep and the mother stumbles from her bed
and rushes immediately in order to her infant feed it. This act of feeding
reveals the closeness; however, the distance enters almost immediately as
the mother refers to the baby’s mouth by comparing it to a kitten, a well
symbol of autonomy, shrewdness, and clumsiness. The characteristic mother’s
state is of alert. The mother’s gown and her doings suggest the sluggish
domestic life of woman reflected by composed term “cow-heavy” and
“Victorian nightgown.” The very gown reminds us of the oppression of women
in domestic life.
In the final stanza the mother notices that morning is approaching: “The
window square / Whitens and swallows its dull stars.” The morning is
symbolic of the rebirth of the female self as the mother now assimilates
the power of Sun in her very being and becomes the light to swallow all
darkness and dull stars. The implication is that now she has realized her
true self and looks beyond the four walls of the house at the rising sun, a
potent symbol of power. The sounds produced ees, oohs and ahss do not come
in the ear of the mother but “ rise like balloons” in the sky.

rajani sharma (research scholar) from India

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Information about Morning Song

Poet: Sylvia Plath
Poem: Morning Song
Volume: The Collected Poems
Year: 1961
Added: Feb 20 2003
Viewed: 405 times
Poem of the Day: Jul 11 2006

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