Not all poetry was deeply personal. Confessional poets such as Anne Sexton and Sylvia Plath were key figures in making poetry a more personal experience. They weren’t afraid to put anything in their work and that is shown in Sylvia Plath’s “Lady Lazarus” where she talks about multiple suicide attempts. Although she uses very smooth and poetic language to describe her struggles with suicide, readers can have a clear picture of what she’s describing in the poem. She played a big role in confessional poetry and poetry as a whole, but I would like to focus on her good friend Anne Sexton’s “Sylvia’s Death”.
Sexton’s comparison in “Sylvia’s Death” shows that she had the same desire for death as Plath. Sexton wanted to do what Sylvia Plath could do which was kill herself. Sexton gave both an envious and mournful tone. She shows her mournfulness early in the poem by asking, “Sylvia was where did you go...”. She was genuinely hurt by the loss of her friend who she related to on such a deep level. I think the poem also shows how Anne Sexton was going through multiple stages of grieving. Things like “Thief” or “how did you crawl...into the death I wanted so badly for so long” clearly shows the envy /jealousy of Plath’s death throughout those middle stanzas, after she was very mournful in the beginning. Then she tries to make light of Plath’s death by saying “what is your death but an old belonging”, what do you think she means by that? I feel as if Sexton is just trying to find ways to get over Plath’s death throughout this whole poem. What good did this poem bring? This poem was very vulnerable, personal and powerful. I think both Sexton and Plath were able to bring to light the emotional struggles that women could be facing without anyone knowing, and they were able to bring those problems/emotions to the public with their personal experiences and I think that was why she was a key in changing the was poetry was approached. Do you?