One of my favorite Sylvia Plath poems is actually short and sweet. It’s called ”You’re,” and it is basically a silly love poem.
Here are the entire two stanzas of the poem, in case the image above is not clear enough:
Clownlike, happiest on your hands,Feet to the stars, and moon-skulled,Gilled like a fish. A common-senseThumbs-down on the dodo’s mode.Wrapped up in yourself like a spool,Trawling your dark as owls do.Mute as a turnip from the FourthOf July to All Fools’ Day,O high-riser, my little loaf.Vague as fog and looked for like mail.Farther off than Australia.Bent-backed Atlas, our traveled prawn.Snug as a bud and at homeLike a sprat in a pickle jug.A creel of eels, all ripples.Jumpy as a Mexican bean.Right, like a well-done sum.A clean slate, with your own face on.
Among the many things this poem makes me think of are my high school English teachers. I remember how they would make us dissect poems and explain every line, every word.
I would have a difficult time defining exactly what Plath meant by the following:
…A common senseThumbs-down on the dodo’s mode.
But, somehow, within the context of the piece, it is indeed a levelheaded, even heartwarming, phrase.
This post is part of my ongoing collaboration with Zeteo Journal. Please click here to read more.