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Digital Subscriptions > Quill & Quire > November 2017 > Searching for Sylvia plath

Searching for Sylvia plath

The American author offers a way to see beauty in tragic circumstances, writes

PERSONAL ESSAY

WHY I TURNED to Sylvia Plath as the inspiration for my new collection of poetry, My Ariel, still remains a bit of a mystery to me. Aesthetically it makes no sense: for starters I don’t write “single” lyric poems. My partner did not betray me (as far as I know). I am not even heterosexual. Plath is a young person’s poet, a gateway poet into a world I have inhabited now for several decades. In a way though, it’s relatively simple: I became a parent and I was looking for motherhood poems. Ariel is, among other things, an account of a new mother trying to write under great strain. That was what I needed to hear about.

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