Sunday, February 11, 2007

The Clue is in the Words

Whilst rummaging through a bookshop in Sedbergh in Cumbria a couple of weeks ago, I came across a biography of the former Poet Laureate, the late Ted Hughes. It is entitled Ted Hughes - The Life of a Poet and was written by Elaine Feinstein shortly after the poet's death.

Ted Hughes was married to the American poet, Sylvia Plath.

It was therefore with interest that I noted an article in today's Sunday Telegraph by Mark Sanderson, writing in the Literary Life section of the Seven magazine. Having read his article, I plucked a copy of Sylvia Plath's Selected Poems (edited by Ted Hughes) from my library shelves and studied her poem entitled Edge. It commences:

The woman is perfected.
Her dead

Body wears the smile of accomplishment,
The illusion of a Greek necessity

Flows in the scrolls of her toga,
Her bare

Feet seem to be saying:
We have come so far, it is over.

On this day in 1963, one week after that poem was written, Sylvia Plath committed suicide.

How often is it that do we not listen to what people are really saying to us?

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