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Sylvia Plath Prezi Thing

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Audrey S

on 3 May 2016

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Transcript of Sylvia Plath Prezi Thing

Sylvia Plath was an influential poet who wrote more than four hundred poems! Her poems are known for their dark tone and disturbing imagery, which was due to her tendency to become depressed.

Early Life
Sylvia Plath was born on October 27, 1932, in Boston, Massachussetts. Her parents were Otto and Aurelia Plath. Her brother Warren was born in 1935. After Warren was born, Otto's health began to fail. He thought he had cancer because a friend who had died from lung cancer recently had had similar symptoms, but he actually had an easily cured disease, diabetes. He underwent a foot amputation due to gangrene caused by his diabetes in October, and unfortunately, he died on November 5, 1940, due to complications. His death affected Sylvia a lot and may have caused her tendency to become depressed later in life.
Sylvia was a star student in school. She had top marks in her class and excelled in all subjects, particularly English and creative writing. Her fist poem appeared in the Boston Herald when she was eight. She won a scholarship to attend Smith College, an all girls' school in Northampton, Massachusetts, and was very proud to be a "Smith Girl" . The benefactress of this scholarship was Olive Higgins Prouty, a famous author that Smith kept a correspondence with for the rest of her life.
By the time Sylvia started college, she was writing very good poems. Some of her inspirations were D.H. Lawrence, James Joyce, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Virginia Woolf, Henry James, Theodore Roethke, Emily Dickinson, Robert Lowell and Anne Sexton. She threw herself into her work, studying and writing poems. She also sent poems away regularly, and although most were rejected, she had some success. Beginning in 1950, she began to get poems into major publications. She also
started writing newspaper articles
and stories.
In 1953, Sylvia seemed to be on a roll. She had recently gotten several articles into magazines Mademoiselle and Seventeen. She was awarded a position as guest editor for Mademoiselle, and spent a month in New York. There, she had many disappointments, including not being allowed to attend a meeting with Dylan Thomas, one of her favorite writers. Things took a turn for the worse when she was not accepted into a Harvard summer class, which she thought she could use to sell more poems. When she was not accepted, she fell into a severe depression.
Suicide Attempt
On August 24, 1953, Sylvia left a note in her house saying "Have gone for a long walk. Will be home tomorrow." Then she took a blanket, a glass of water, and a bottle of sleeping pills and went down to her cellar. Then she crawled through a two-and-a-half foot entrance to a crawl space below her family's porch. Her mother quickly called police, and the surrounding woods were searched. She was found two days later, with eight pills left in the bottle. She recovered in a hospital and in 1954 she was able to go back to Smith College.
After Graduation
In 1955, Sylvia graduated from Smith.
After graduating, she moved to Cambridge, England, on a Fulbright Scholarship. She had many lovers, but none were permanent. She met Ted Hughes in 1956. She and Hughes were married on June 16, 1956. The couple returned to Massachusetts in 1957. In 1959 they moved back to England. Sylvia's first collection of poems, Colossus, was published in 1960 in England and 1962 in the US. She gave birth to her children Frieda in 1960 and Nicholas in 1962. After her children were born, she began writing her novel The Bell Jar and many of her best poems.
In 1962, Ted Hughes left Sylvia for another woman. Sylvia fell into a deep depression and during that time wrote most of the poems that would compromise her famous book Ariel. In 1963, she published a semi-autobiographical novel called the Bell Jar. It detailed her experiences with depression and her attempted suicide. The winter of 1962-1963 was a cold, depressing winter. Sylvia wrote many poems and short stories. However, at this time she was severely depressed.
Death & Legacy
On February 11, 1963, Sylvia committed suicide at age 30. She completely sealed the rooms between herself and her children and she left a note for Trevor Thomas, her downstairs neighbor, telling him to call the doctor. Then she placed her head in a gas oven. However, the gas seeped down and knocked out Mr. Thomas for several hours. If the doctor had been called, Sylvia could potentially have been saved. She was buried in Heptonstall. She had written over four hundred poems during her lifetime. Today, her gravesite is visited by hundreds of people each year.
"Discussion Group - Confessional Poetry - Spring 2010." Literature Forum & Presentation Pages / Discussion Group. Web. 17 Apr. 2016. <http://litpresentations.pbworks.com/w/page/18059470/Discussion Group - Confessional Poetry - Spring 2010>.
"Sylvia Plath." Poetry Foundation. Poetry Foundation. Web. 18 Apr. 2016. <http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems-and-poets/poets/detail/sylvia-plath>.
"Sylvia Plath Biography." Poets.org. Academy of American Poets. Web. 20 Apr. 2016. <https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poet/sylvia-plath>.
Steinberg, Peter K. "Biography." A Celebration, This Is. Web. 12 Apr. 2016. <http://www.sylviaplath.info/biography.html>.
"They Had to Call and Call: The Search for Sylvia Plath." Sylvia Plath Studies. Web. <https://scholarworks.dlib.indiana.edu/journals/index.php/plath/article/view/4677/4313>.

The prince leans to the girl in scarlet heels,
Her green eyes slant, hair flaring in a fan
Of silver as the rondo slows; now reels
Begin on tilted violins to span

The whole revolving tall glass palace hall
Where guests slide gliding into light like wine;
Rose candles flicker on the lilac wall
Reflecting in a million flagons' shine,

And glided couples all in whirling trance
Follow holiday revel begun long since,
Until near twelve the strange girl all at once
Guilt-stricken halts, pales, clings to the prince

As amid the hectic music and cocktail talk
She hears the caustic ticking of the clock.

I am silver and exact. I have no preconceptions.
Whatever I see I swallow immediately
Just as it is, unmisted by love or dislike.
I am not cruel, only truthful ‚
The eye of a little god, four-cornered.
Most of the time I meditate on the opposite wall.
It is pink, with speckles. I have looked at it so long
I think it is part of my heart. But it flickers.
Faces and darkness separate us over and over.

Now I am a lake. A woman bends over me,
Searching my reaches for what she really is.
Then she turns to those liars, the candles or the moon.
I see her back, and reflect it faithfully.
She rewards me with tears and an agitation of hands.
I am important to her. She comes and goes.
Each morning it is her face that replaces the darkness.
In me she has drowned a young girl, and in me an old woman
Rises toward her day after day, like a terrible fish.
"I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead;
I lift my lids and all is born again.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)

The stars go waltzing out in blue and red,
And arbitrary blackness gallops in:
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

I dreamed that you bewitched me into bed
And sung me moon-struck, kissed me quite insane.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)

God topples from the sky, hell's fires fade:
Exit seraphim and Satan's men:
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.

I fancied you'd return the way you said,
But I grow old and I forget your name.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)

I should have loved a thunderbird instead;
At least when spring comes they roar back again.
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)"
Mad Girl's Love Song
My thoughts are crabbed and sallow,
My tears like vinegar,
Or the bitter blinking yellow
Of an acetic star.

Tonight the caustic wind, love,
Gossips late and soon,
And I wear the wry-faced pucker of
The sour lemon moon.

While like an early summer plum,
Puny, green, and tart,
Droops upon its wizened stem
My lean, unripened heart.
Color floods to the spot, dull purple.
The rest of the body is all washed-out,
The color of pearl.

In a pit of a rock
The sea sucks obsessively,
One hollow the whole sea's pivot.

The size of a fly,
The doom mark
Crawls down the wall.

The heart shuts,
The sea slides back,
The mirrors are sheeted.
Sylvia Plath
Audrey Salmon
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