You do not do, you do not do
Any more, black shoe
In which I have lived like a foot
For thirty years, poor and white,
Barely daring to breathe or Achoo.

Daddy, I have had to kill you.
You died before I had time —-
Marble-heavy, a bag full of God,
Ghastly statue with one gray toe
Big as a Frisco seal

And a head in the freakish Atlantic
Where it pours bean green over blue
In the waters off the beautiful Nauset.
I used to pray to recover you.
Ach, du.

In the German tongue, in the Polish town
Scraped flat by the roller
Of wars, wars, wars.
But the name of the town is common.
My Polack friend

Says there are a dozen or two.
So I never could tell where you
Put your foot, your root,
I never could talk to you.
The tongue stuck in my jaw.

It stuck in a barb wire snare.
Ich, ich, ich, ich,
I could hardly speak.
I thought every German was you.
And the language obscene

An engine, an engine,
Chuffing me off like a Jew.
A Jew to Dachau, Auschwitz, Belsen.
I began to talk like a Jew.
I think I may well be a Jew.

The snows of the Tyrol, the clear beer of Vienna
Are not very pure or true.
With my gypsy ancestress and my weird luck
And my Taroc pack and my Taroc pack
I may be a bit of a Jew.

I have always been scared of you,
With your Luftwaffe, your gobbledygoo.
And your neat mustache
And your Aryan eye, bright blue.
Panzer-man, panzer-man, O You —-

Not God but a swastika
So black no sky could squeak through.
Every woman adores a Fascist,
The boot in the face, the brute
Brute heart of a brute like you.

You stand at the blackboard, daddy,
In the picture I have of you,
A cleft in your chin instead of your foot
But no less a devil for that, no not
Any less the black man who

Bit my pretty red heart in two.
I was ten when they buried you.
At twenty I tried to die
And get back, back, back to you.
I thought even the bones would do.

But they pulled me out of the sack,
And they stuck me together with glue.
And then I knew what to do.
I made a model of you,
A man in black with a Meinkampf look

And a love of the rack and the screw.
And I said I do, I do.
So daddy, I’m finally through.
The black telephone’s off at the root,
The voices just can’t worm through.

If I’ve killed one man, I’ve killed two —-
The vampire who said he was you
And drank my blood for a year,
Seven years, if you want to know.
Daddy, you can lie back now.

There’s a stake in your fat black heart
And the villagersnever liked you.
They are dancing and stamping on you.
They always knew it was you.
Daddy, daddy, you bastard, I’m through.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Sylvia Plath's poem Daddy

67 Comments

  1. Princes Ub says:

    This is a very nice poem i have ever read.. m going to have a presentation on this poem:)

  2. Eden says:

    in theis poem she is i think refeering to her hate of her father and the way he was strict but at the same time she could be talking bout the way her father died when she was young

  3. Grace says:

    It is ignorant for one not to assume that the persona Plath refers to in this poem is herself. This is confessional poetry!! Plath studied Robert Lowell’s work (Lowell even wrote the foreword to the first American edition of Ariel) and herself acknowledged that the majority of her works were written to document and attempt to relieve personal trauma. The nature of confessional poetry often means that the subject matter may be fictionalised somewhat in order to bend to suit the author’s purpose, however the feelings are not tampered with. With “Daddy” Plath gives the reader an intimate window into her own head, never altering the intense feelings of hatred and resentment she feels toward men.

  4. Eva says:

    An other possibility is that she is representing herself by the colour white. Just like her father is described in the colour black. The contrast.

  5. Michelle says:

    Eva, you asked about this line?
    “The snows of the Tyrol, the cler beer of Vienna
    Are not very pure, or true”

    I actually just spent a lot of time researching what this refers to. Before WWII, the breweries of Vienna were all owned and ran by Jewish people. However, when the Nazi occupation began, these breweries were taken away and put under German management, forcing the Jews from their businesses.

    I am not completely sure if this is what Plath is referring to, but it is the only logical explanation I can make out of these lines.

    I hope I helped 🙂

  6. Michelle says:

    Why must everyone insist that this poem is about Plath’s life? Whether or not it is indeed true, we as readers can only assume that the speaker isn’t the author, but rather a persona created to tell a story. Isn’t it always the first rule to never say the poet is the speaker?

  7. sexy latina yvonne says:

    when talking to a child, the frequency and tone of your voice changes in pattern into a more soothing sound, In Sylvia Plath’s “Daddy”, the rhyming sound of (ooh) gives it a melody or lullabye sound. there is a childish tone in the poem; she does refer to her father as daddy 🙂 (which is kinda kute)

    newayz

    when she refers to the shoe. she could be refering to the nursery rhyme of the old woman who lived in a shoe 🙂

    when she speaks of a vampyre (the correct way to spell it.. duh!) that has sucked on her blood for 7 years she is refering to Ted who was married with her for seven years. The one year, was when he was not being loyal to her and was being a lil manwhore 🙂 (yupyup guys can be bigger sluts than girls)

    Frisco seal?? well im not sure what she means by that
    but there are alot of really BIG kute gray seals in san fransisco =)

    the last stanzas could be refferring to the American Witch Trials
    kinda like in Salem

    yupyup!!

    well these are some krazy ideas of mine
    but i do need help interpreting so if someone is willing to help me just email me

    thanx 🙂

  8. Eva says:

    I understand the whole poem except de lines where she say:

    “The snows of the Tyrol, the cler beer of Vienna
    Are not very pure, or true”

    What does this mean? Does it symbolise her mother from Austria? Tyrol is an alpine region in Austria, and Vienna the capital. This idiotic symbolism is the only one i can imagine. Someone here who have understood those sentences?

  9. Daniel Haney says:

    Has anyone noticed the “anti-Christ” images in this poem? Line 46 includes the words “Not God”-i.e. anti-God, anti-Christ to allude to whatever authoritative male figure she has in mind; In lines 55-56 and 73 there is a “black man” (55) who partakes in a perverse “communion” when he bites the speaker’s “pretty red heart in two” (56) and “[drinks] [her] blood for a year” (73); and in numerous lines 31-35, 43-48, and 65 (to name a few) there are allusions to Adolf Hitler–the man many believed was THE “anti-Christ” Just thought I’d share that little tangent

  10. jui says:

    daddy is a poem written when hitler of germany was on his peak of torturing people by disguisting techniques.here daddy is referred to hitler and his harresments. plath being his sufferer in one or the other ways has very bad image of his. she is suffocated in his rule so she reffers it to be a smelly shoe. she had suffered in a young age so she wanted to kill him but unfortunately he commited suiside{as per the book landmarks of 20th century world history by hussain naqui)and plath missed a chance to kill him.she expresses her frustration in the last line by adderessing hitlrt sa a bastard.in all the poem reflects the mental or psychological impact of hitler’s rule.

  11. Stacey says:

    Does anybody know the month and year this poem was published?

  12. Staci says:

    This poem is exquisite! I love the diction that Plath uses. Although this poem is quite disturbing and upsetting, I love the drama and the hatred. I am a very appealing person.

  13. nona says:

    The reference to “the black telephone’s off at the root” is a symbol of her disconnecting to reality and to this world”, her way of turning her back on these memories.

  14. john says:

    elle, for someone who has a degree you say some remarkably stupid things, this is a forum where you discuss and voice ideas even if they seem wrong, that is the whole point. to openly insult someone else is moronic, you actually suck the big willy.

  15. Michael says:

    First, I’d say this poem is striking- it’s tone and rhythm really build up an atmosphere of anger which is so uncomfortably intense that I almost feel I’m intruding. Such deep, candid emotions are actually (in my opinion), rarely seen in 20th century poetry in such a stark way. The unusual public fascination with Plath’s life (not given to many other poets) makes the poem easier to make sense of and somehow more emotionally accessible, as we know exactly what emotional damage she had sustained (and, of course the irony of us knowing her ultimate fate).
    I’d also say that I think it’s a real shame that people post half-baked and, even worse, badly written comments on here. This website is a great idea and I’ve yet to find a similar one for all poetry with the possibility of posting comments. At least the humorous ones make for light-reading, especially the purple alien one which actually made me chuckle, but there’s a lot of badly thought out stuff on here, probably as a result of people’s ignorance and lack of intelligence really. I think these guys are out of their depth here- back to Roald Dahl, people!
    Anyhoo, e-mail me if you’re in London and are interested in discussing this kind of stuff.

  16. Genevieve StClaire says:

    I do not BELIEVE some of these comments. “Elle” BRAGS about her double (dble) degree in English & Psychology, and denigrates a 14 year old (? how does she know the age?) for her “not graspoing the English language”, while her own comments are replte with English errors in spelling, grammar ans capitalizations. Talk about being BLIND to yourself!! Maybe she should have concentrated on ONE major, and definitely neither one of those two, ’cause she sucks at both. She confuses inappropriate & base insults ad hominem with good criticism and slams “misuse” of the language by Jennifer with an atrociously written polemic. Bah.
    Oh – and she reeks with unjustified and unjustifiable arrogance. I side with Jennifer. Go, girl.
    Incidentally, I never saw so many gross mistakes in the writing of comments devoted to a poem in the English language, and so much misinformation and misinterpretation, as in what I just read. YAAAWN.
    Genevieve from the US

  17. Pip says:

    A collage of childhood images of the father, a single shoe, the accent, the foreign phrases, and the legacy of living with a fear of sickness leading to death, afraid to even sneeze. The pain of the child’s unresolved grief, not permitted to say goodbye or have closure, abandoned and insecure. The feeling of that the body has somehow been lost and is just missing and needs to be found and put back together. Later in therapy, an image of the father is sculpted, to facilitate dialogue with the father, and perhaps a trip to Germany or Poland is taken, to trace the family roots, finding familiarity in the accents and names, but no direct connection with the father. The trip is an attempt to bring closure, but it is the train ride, so evocative of the images of Jews and Gypsies going to the camps, that provides the key to bring closure. The child ‘demonizes’ the father as the Nazi, thus justifying her anger at the abandonment of death and enabling her to ‘kill’ the demon and it’s hold upon her life and emotions. Grief and abandonment looms again at the death of her marriage and evokes her earlier grief, as she struggles once more to ‘kill’ the new demon of abandonment and release it’s 7-year grip on her heart, mind and energies.

  18. Katie Leigh says:

    This poem “DADDY” shows how much she really did hate her dad. And that he must have done something to make her feel this way and that is what she is trying to tell everyone!

  19. Mark says:

    Amber, please realize that the Nazis persecuted the Jews. Not the Germans.

  20. Diane says:

    In the 10th stanza she says “Not God but a swastika” what does this mean? This is obviously referencing her father but I do not understand the meaning behind it. Is she just using a visual symbol to reiterate her feelings toward her father to the reader?

  21. Elle says:

    Jessica,

    ‘Plath did not have major problems with her husband’.

    Um, yes she did. In fact, he was already having an affair with a woman he later married, when Plath wrote this.

    The line ‘coming through the telephone(sic)’ is rumouredly a reference to overhearing her husband’s lover on the telephone.

    Do you actually know anything about Plath or have you just seen the movie and think you do? Incidentally, the film was not endorsed by Plath’s family who hated it enough to prevent the studio using any of Plath’s poems in the film. That fact alone, should give you an answer as to how accurate the film is.

    Elle

  22. Jessica Lynn Harris says:

    Sylvia’s father died when she was 8 years old. Despite the first impression of the poem “Daddy”, Plath adorded her father and did not have major problems with her husband.

    Sylvia was upset that she did not get to say goodbye to her father before he died.

    We must look beyond the immediate impressions of the poem’s lyrics before understanding it.

  23. priyanka says:

    the line in the poem ‘I thought every German was like you’ is in the past tense hinting that probably its abt her entrapment by’ and then triumph over the past, the demons in her past. I HTINK like many poets, she creates personal myths that express most powerfully her sense of reality- the jew and german relatoinship is a very powerful myth she uses.

  24. Yelly says:

    I cannot say how much I love this poem. I know it is bout what she says, her father. But to me, it is about many men I have known. My favorite part is, “…every woman adores a Facist, the boot in the face, the brute, Brute heart of a brute like you…” I sweat, that is it in a shell. I could go on forever about how I understand that line….this is a fabulous poem GREAT and if anyone else has opinions to share with me, please do!

  25. Grant says:

    This poem is about Sylvia finally letting go of all her hurtfull memories of her father. she constintly compares her father to her husband, thus at the end of the poem stating how she has lost all trust and love for all men universaly. when she says how she killed her father, she is saying how she has killed her memories of him. It is important to realize her father was not a nazi. please feel free to send any quiestion and statments to laurence_f@mweb.co.za

    Thank you Grant

  26. Elle says:

    Hey Jennifer!

    Get an education! There are several references to Sylvia’s husband, Ted Hughes, in the poem, all of them to obvious to be coincidental or Freudian. For example,

    ‘I made a model of you,
    A man in black with a Meinkampf look
    And a love of the rack and the screw.
    And I said I do, I do.’

    and then later

    ‘If I’ve killed one man, I’ve killed two –
    The vampire who said he was you’

    Syliva was venting her distrust of men, because she had been adbandoned by both the prominent male figures in her life. First, the father who died prematurely and later, her husband who cheated on her and left her in poverty for another woman. The line about the telephone can also be read as a reference to hearing her husband’s mistress on the phone. I could go on, but I’de be typing for ages when all you really need to do is get a proper education rather than accusing people that DO have an education of reading well-read poet’s work with Freudian overtones. And for the record, I have a dgree with a double major in both English and Psychology so don’t bother any lame come-backs about what constitues Freudian and what doesn’t. I’ve got more answers than I care to give and I’m not about to waste my time on some fourteen year old that can’t even grasp the english language, much less interpret poetry.

    Elle
    xxx

  27. amber says:

    i think the jew and german thing is a metaphor. jews are persecuted for their beleifs and germans were the ones doing the persecuting. i think plath felt like an outsider due to her dad’s actions and the way she felt she was treated but i do not think it was completely literal that she was jew and he was a nazi!

  28. calcrnflakegirl says:

    I had never heard of Sylvia Plath until I was up all night watching t.v. trying to distract my own depressed thoughts, due to finding out that my boyfriend had been cheating on me, when a movie called Sylvia came on, and you can imagine the emotions I felt as I watched her life’s story unfold. I started reading her poetry and learning more about her life and have become a great admirer of her works. My comment is for Lenore from United States. I just wanted to say that your interpetation of this poem is excellent! Your research and knowledge of her life is very extensive and I believe you’ve nailed it! For a lack of better words. It’s very early in the morning and my brain is a bit fried. Great Job, you’ve explained this poem so well, as I go back and read it, I can see how it all fits and comes together, that it now makes sense. Thank you, I hope you’ve commented on all of her poetry.

  29. Angel says:

    To hear read Sylvia’s works of art, is such a soothing thing, to know that there were writers like that back then in 20th century just gives me chills. I have not read another authos writings that have anazed me since I’ve found out about Sylvia Plath about four years ago, her works of literature austounded me. I am a junior in high school and I have to write about an American author and of course as I always choose, I chose Sylvia Plath, although ever year I get to research an author and it usually ends up being her I am still amazed in reading more of her life styles and workds or art. Daddy has got ot be my favorite poem of hers and The Bell Jar is my most favorite book EVER! I cannot fathom the thought that another author would take her space, because there is none that can be as in depth as Sylvia was.

  30. Laleh says:

    She has developed a hatred for Germans. Thinking that every German is like her father. She compares herself to a person of Jewish decent. The vicitim of a hanous crime comitted by her father. She seems to tie her husband into this poem as well.

  31. Enola says:

    i think its a beautifuly written poem like the rest , and it did bring a tear or two to my eye when i read it, the last sentence just shows how much hurt she was… x x x x

  32. Jennifer says:

    Why is it when woman writes about her father there is a tie to her husband/boyfried, etc? Daddy is about her father, not Ted. It is clear in every stanza, the way it flows on and on with a rhythm that isn’t going to be interrupted with the intrusion of Ted. Any comparisons or allusions to Ted are just more unoriginal Freudian b-s from a reviewer who can’t conceive of a woman NOT writing about the man in her life.

  33. Rachel says:

    I’m currently researching Sylvia Plath for a senior English assignment and have decided to anylise “Daddy” as well as five other of Sylvia’s poems.

    Not only is Plath comparing her suffering to that of the Jews, I believe that deeper down she is trying to sort out her emotions concerning her father’s ethnic race. How would a child feel to hear about the horrific actions of the Nazis and know that her father is German? It is easy, especially for young people, to group all German’s together, need I remind you of the line “I thought every German was you.”

    I also would like to comment on Daddy from Russia’s inappropriate babble. I am from Australia and would just like to say that we have some of the worlds most intelligent people right here on our doorstep and i’m sorry to hear that your country did, infact, come second in the great arms race against America after WWII. Also, please keep your comments concerning Cancer and other incurable diseases to a disease forum as it is disgustingly inappropriate and inconsiderate. My grandfather and mother have both recently died from Cancer and let me tell you also that i am next in line and am insulted by your callis attitude.

  34. jamie mcginlay says:

    As an immense fan of plath’s work,
    having read it some number of times, i have to say that reading all poems once, is simply not enough.
    everytime read her poems seem to express more depth,
    thing you may not have picked up reading one for the first time around. daddy is one of my all time favrate poems ever!
    as a child my own mother suffured from depression also, so i know of such things first hand, or second as it were.
    i thing, though the poems speak of her betreyal by husban Ted Hughes and is also about her invarable relationship with her late father, it is also about her mothers betreyal and adultry expireance. this is very subtle and may well be seeing to much into things. though if you are so inclined to look into it, towards the end of the poem, the line (they always knew it was you) i thing speaks this subtle and not often acknowelaged issue.

  35. Mjaye Mazwi says:

    If the poem has one quality it is the ability to elude an easy interpretation. I would argue that “daddy” was to Sylvia Plath less a real being and much more a metaphor that she uses to rage against all the subtle ways the past can constrain our experience of the present.

  36. Jupiter Jonze says:

    Her father is the reason why she found Hughes. She knows that the other men in her past could and would not live up to the mythological archetype that her father created in her head, so because of this she hates him.

  37. Blondie says:

    This poem is really sad. She had such a hard time with her Dad and he died when she was 10. And she hated him sol much and compared him to Hitler, the Devil and a vampire that is horrible! and then she tried to kill herself at 20 years old and was only stuck together with glue in a way. She also met a guy that reminded her of her dad so she married him and lived with him for 7 years which is really sad. Her dad must have been a horrible man

  38. Kerri says:

    most likely-though we can never be certain unless she comes back from the grave-plath is first referring to her father in the poem and then hughes who she believed was an impersonation, clone of her daddy

  39. Israel says:

    i think that if the poem is to be about both Ted and her father, that they must have something in common. Did Ted have German ancestry or have something else in common with Otto?

    Overall, i think the poem is about her father, hence the title of the poem..i really enjoyed this poem, just like im enjoying her other works

  40. Diana says:

    This poemis about her emotional struggle. the point that she just wanted to trow everything out the window and let her anger out.

  41. polti n says:

    my dad will love it thanks

  42. Jessica Page says:

    breathtaking.absolutely one of the greatest poets of all time.

  43. Kelly 'lil' Bryan says:

    This poem has really brought out my sensitive side of me. All my life I have been working in harsh conditions, in the circus juggleing balls, all because my right shoulder was chopped off in the battle of YetiGoatFace(also known as gettysburg) in the civil war by a crazy quarter Jew, quarter Nazi, quarter flamingo, quarter samari. Ok, I was fighting a luaghing hyena when this cheap son of a blastard (flamingo samari warrior) chopped my arm off with his samari sword. So I turned around and blasted his head of with my bazooka. In the end, I feel like I can truly relate to this poem because of my feeling inferior to Josh Host I have been overly ready give up all competing right to him. THEREFORE JOSH WINS!!!

  44. Kelly Bry says:

    This poem has really brought out my sensitive side. I have been living all my life in a circus juggling with one arm because I lost my right arm…well basically I lost my right shoulder. It happened in the civil war when a quarter jew, quarter nazi, quarter samari warrior chopped my arm off in the battle of Gettysburg. I was fighting a laughing Hyena when all of the sudden the cheap blastard of a samari chopped my shoulder off from behind. So I blew his head off with a bazooka. In the end this trauma has made me feel inferior to Josh Hostetler and his double shoulder personality.

  45. Josh Host. says:

    I think that this poem is weird and only weirdo’s read it when they are not forced.

    YO. just kidding… i love it. It’s got soul.

  46. Jared says:

    Yea as i’ve heard from my Poetry teacher, her greatest works were created in her darkest and worst of times, the months leading up to her suicide. Her works are great, such raw emotion and talent

  47. Lenore says:

    Qtto who’s ancestral German name had been Platt was a professor of German and biology, (his specialty was bees) Otto became ill and was convinced it was cancer. He refused treatment because of the lack of a cure for cancer. His illness became so advanced it threatened his life. He discovered he had diabetes’s and had to have his leg amputated due to gangrene. ( This directly explains the German thoughts and the one shoe from the beginning of this poem.) Her living like a foot in this shoe reflects her grief with his passing. She was 8 years old when he died and obviously felt abandoned She was also suicidal for a vast majority of her life. As described in the “Bell Jar”. Her fathers death and life itself became a burden to her. She references her father and his bees in many poems. This is a huge part of her angst.
    The photo she describes is the only picture of her father she had. ( This is intensely described in the “Bell Jar”) As is the fact she was not allowed by her mother to attend the funeral or his gravesite. The poem then turns to her first suicide attempt which once again the “Bell Jar” is based upon. She then turns the poem towards Ted. She looked for the closest thing she could find to her father in a man. Someone to fill the grieving void. She trusted this would last forever. Although, she feared it would not. Abandonment seemed her greatest fear. She sowed this at times with jealousy. Sylvia discovered Ted’s affair with Assia via a phone call to him that she answered. She recognized the disguised voice on the other end of the line. This represents the line referring to the black phone. And the voice trying to worm through. The last lines refer to her giving up on both burdens I mentioned earlier.
    I have an annoying habit of reading various biographies of any writers I feel fit to do so to. I would recommend the “ Bell Jar” to anyone whom really admires this writer. I also would recommend looking into her life further after reading that. At that point all of her writings begin to make sense in accordance to her own life. Thank you for taking the time to read my comments.

  48. Jen says:

    To those who think this is not about her Dad let me give you some info, her dad taught German at Boston University, he died from gangrene complications (his toe turned black look at first stanza), he was born in Poland, and was of German decent…thus all the Nazi comments…she may not have loved her husband at this point, but I definately think this poem was about her father.

  49. Ashlynn says:

    Sylvia Plath is my favorite poet. Her poems are so deep and real. She spoke her mind about things that were really happening to her. “Daddy” speaks to me in that I understand the feelings of anger that she poured into it. In the process of accepting her father’s death, she felt deserted and alone. I believe anger is great fuel for writing poetry.

  50. Danielle says:

    I think this poem is about Both her Husband ted and about her Dad,it seems to say more about her dad but truly a lot more about her husband,its almost like you have to be in a certain mood and time of your life to understand the every true meaning of her words,making a connection with your heart and feelings.The anger and passion in her words touch me so strong…I have been absolutely in love w/ her work since the first time I read about her.

  51. mani says:

    wellthe poem is masterly sewed and the important aspecyt abt this is that it is abt *HITLER the great* and her deep emotional attachement with her father.so a sweet gal /boy can understand this if really he had been loved . if u r one u can get it

  52. Taylor says:

    Personally after reading critics on several of her poems it about not only her father Otto but also about her husband who left her for a younger girl when it sayd 7 years, she was married to her husband for 7 years for some reason she feels the need to make herself older when her father dies he died when she was 8 not 10 when she was 20 she tries to comment suicide thats why that part is in there and the vampire is her husband, she wants to let go of him but can’t until she said she was through, she never really gets over him though((((i don’t belive this poems about anger, stress, but more about hopelesses ness and abandement from the men in her life, they controlled her future not the other way around))))

  53. Stacy says:

    this poem is good but it is crazy!!!!

  54. Laila says:

    Daddy is neither soley concerned with Otto (Sylvia’s father) nor Ted but rather a combination of both. This is particularly evident in the twelfth and fifteenth stanzas where she slips freely between discussing the two- thus showing her perception of both of the predominant male influences in her life as being one and the same. An example of this point is when the speaker declares,
    “I made a model of you,
    A man in black with a Meinkampf look”
    Here she implies that she deliberately sought a husband to reflect the memory of her father and replace his presence in her life. As such although much of the poem may superfluously seem concerned with simple slander of her father’s persona it is much deeper than this, as the psychoanalytic imago of her Daddy shows, and it is an amalgamation of both the psychological archetype of the speaker’s memories of him and her own psychic oppression.

  55. Gwen says:

    i had to do a project on Sylvia Plath and i wasnt very excited at first but after i read ‘daddy’ it truely inspired me. i really enjoyed it and actually understood it. i do believe ‘daddy’ is about her father and how she had to deal with a his death. she related the vampire to him as a dead soul in a human form. her father was an immigrant from Germany so she called him a Nazi because of his rough and unfair treatment. she called herself the Jew, being the victim. i think this may be the first poem i can really ralate to and understand. i thought this truly was a great poem.

  56. Dannielle Austin says:

    i don’t think that i have eever read any of Sylvia Plath’s poems.

  57. Brian says:

    tran-D is obviously very well educated and we should all listen to his view of the poem…..

  58. Victoria M says:

    This poem about her emotional struggles, and i personaly think is about her father and husband. She puts herself in a nazi’s childs view and release her anger of men and society into this poem. Though it is very angery i think it is very powerful and well written

  59. Cheddarbob says:

    Well, I have read the poem, and after careful thought I can conclude that it was indeed written by Sylvia Plath, and not by a purple alien dressed in women’s clothing and putting on a fake American accent, as rumour has it. I believe whoever started this ridiculous rumour is an utter nincompoop, they know who they are, and I should think they are feeling mighty sheepish right about now.

  60. Mike says:

    In a time of need, this poem can be great to read. A very angry poem I think, however, anger is one of the ways people deal with stress and internal struggle. This poem is about Plath’s personal life, it has nothing to do with her father. She compares “Daddy” as an image of evil, of hate. She’s using this Daddy character also as a nazi who persecuted Jews. This connection to the holocaust is very powerful. Reading this poem is great when your depressed or have depression problems. The anger expressed in this poem is very healing and soothing.

  61. Alice says:

    Sylvia Plath’s outstanding poem ‘Daddy’ is evidently based on memories of her father Otto Plath, who died when she was eight years of age.It emphasises the many similarities he shared with her husband, Ted Hughes.Many terms described throughout WW2 suggest hatred for her father as if he was a Nazi.This powerful poem is one to be remembered because of its uniqueness and talented writer Sylvia Plath, who sadly felt the need to end her life at the age of thirty.

  62. ashley says:

    this poem isnt about her dad. its really about her husband. she didnt like him, didnt love him, she loved his poems, she fell in love with his poems, so married him. she knew that she couldnt write a poem about him directly, so she called it “daddy” to talk about the father of her children.

  63. Heather says:

    I think that the poem is about Plath’s own personal experiences. She was known to do that. Plath’s father and husband were both very dominating and this poem represents how she felt about them.

  64. julie says:

    The worst things anyone has ever been through in his or her own life are the only real atrocities he or she can really know. Everyone has their own internal Hell to deal with, just some deal differently than others. She used the imagery of the Holocaust to describe that inner turmoil. It’s the evils we face in life given a twentieth centry face. It’s also the courage and strength in surviving it.
    “Daddy”, I think, is about triupmhing over that more than the suffering. I find strength in this poem. The anger as a necessary process in the healing.
    She’s not the first, nor the last, to use the Holocaust as a metaphor. It’s as much a process of learning from history as it is to simply study it in the context it occurred.

  65. Vi says:

    Sylvia is a wonderful poet and a strong woman. Most of her poems are deep and outstanding. Daddy is one of my favorite.

  66. emma says:

    Sylvia was a very strong lady and is a great poet

  67. Lee P says:

    Have you ever thought about how life can possible go on for those who have experienced real atrocities? Whether this is truth to Sylvia or to be taken as a metaphor it tells volumes about life in the shadow of badly placed beliefs.

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