Sylvia Plath Figurative Language

1182 Words5 Pages
Sylvia Plath’s “Daddy”
The poetry of Sylvia Plath is shrouded in a heavy veil of figurative language and is often accompanied by her grief, producing themes of a harrowing darkness throughout many of her poems. In one of her most famous poems, “Daddy,” it is clear that Plath draws upon her own life experiences. Weaving in her deep, explosive, and even despondent emotions into the lines of the poem, Plath creates a familiar framework of grief and bitterness. However, Plath leaves no poem ordinary; the unofficial queen of metaphors, Plath coats “Daddy” with a thick layer of comparisons while simultaneously providing evocative imagery and allusions to the holocaust. With a tone of bitterness and the use of extensive figurative language, Plath
…show more content…
While “Daddy,” can work as a stand alone poem, knowing about Plath’s life can deepen the effect and provide an understanding of why the poem is heavily masked with such an abrasive tone of discordant hatred. In “Spluttering Plath,” Sexton notes that, “The decisive event in Plath’s life was the death of her father, Otto, when she was eight.” The death of her father sent her spiraling into a fathomless depression that left an incessant overcast on the rest of her life. Described by Sexton, “[Plath] both hated her father for dying and longed to join him in death.” Eventually, when she was twenty-one, Plath attempted to reunite with her father through committing suicide, but did not succeed (Sexton). However, even with the numerous similarities between the poem and Plath’s life, the speaker of the poem is different from Plath herself; Plath employs the use of exaggeration and creates big, hyperbolized characters for the sake of poetry, but still utilizes her own emotions. To summarize, in the words of Rosenblatt, “The plot of “Daddy” is almost completely invented. Plath’s father was not a Nazi, and her mother was not Jewish”
Open Document