Poet: Sylvia Plath
Poem: The Rival
Volume: The Collected Poems
Year: Published/Written in 1961
Poem of the Day:
Jan 13 2005
Comment 9 of 9, added on November 7th, 2011 at 6:31 PM.
I understand the different perspectives of it being based on Aurelia and Ted Hughes but I keep getting drawn to the different references.
"Making stone out of everything" alludes to Medusa yet "Spiteful as a woman" confuses that idea and "through the mailslot with loving regularly" links back to Aurelia.
Is that her mother is not human enough to be referred to as female or is Plath addressing both individuals here?
George from Australia
Comment 8 of 9, added on April 14th, 2010 at 3:37 PM.
Despite what she truly based the explosion of emotion in this poem about, The only meaning any self respecting reader can gleam from it is that of her depression at her mother's always too high expectations, She finds her mother smothering like "Carbon Monoxide", she always must have the final say "Light-Stealer" And the constant stream of pestering her mother gave her whilst Sylvia lived in England, a volume of letters so large, her mother published them as a book, Hence: "No day is safe from news of you"
My theory: She is either directly speaking of her mother, or personifying her mother as death itself, as im sure her mother assisted in her unfortunate death.
Thank you if you read this far.
from United Kingdom
Comment 7 of 9, added on January 21st, 2010 at 6:36 PM.
i think this poem is mainly about ted and how she feels towards him.
sarah from Australia
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