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Published: 19-11-2019

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The Portrayal of Motherhood in Morning Song, a Poem by Sylvia Plath

Sylvia Plath has written quite a few poems portraying her views and feelings towards being a mother, some of which come across as unconventional and insensitive. Some critics argue this exact same opinion about her poem ‘Morning Song’, due to the way that she describes her personal youngster in a extremely detached, distanced way. Nevertheless, at the beginning of the poem this 1st appears untrue due to the way the youngster is described. For example, the title straight away has a extremely optimistic, chirpy and celebratory really feel to it, suggesting her joy due to her baby’s birth. The 1st word used in the poem is ‘love’, providing the reader the impression that alongside happiness, Plath felt a powerful sense of affection towards her child. The kid is then described as a ‘fat gold watch’ which in some instances, has been argued to represent a plump, wholesome infant or to suggest the preciousness and the value that this infant holds in Plath’s eyes. The ‘fat gold watch’ could also be observed as a optimistic symbol towards time and the beginning of a new, valuable life in a mother’s mind.

Even so, in spite of the first good impression that the reader may well obtain, the mood in the poem eventually alterations. The baby seems to be named as an object far more than after all through the poem, becoming referred to as a ‘statue’ and a ‘watch’, which are each heavy, cold inanimate objects suggesting that the child is a burden in Plath’s life, or even anything that consumes her time. A watch can also be seen as mechanical, implying that the connection between baby and mother is not organic or heartfelt, but forced and routine which could be represented by the excellent three-line structure of every single stanza all through. The idea of a ‘drafty museum’ as oppose to the comfort of a residence offers us the sense of a cold, uncomfortable feeling, alongside of the vulnerability of the child’s ‘nakedness’. All of these concepts would leave the reader believing that Plath feels resentful towards her child as as an alternative of bringing her happiness and joy, it has dragged her down and chilled her heart.

This is additional shown by Plath’s disownment and abandonment of the infant, when she states, ‘I’m no much more your mother’. Towards the end of the poem the tone becomes considerably much more selfish as we see considerably far more use of the word ‘I’ suggesting that to Plath, motherhood is about herself and not the baby. The phrase ‘Effacement at the wind’s hand’ is also important as it highlights Plath’s fear of aging and losing her physical look, which she feels the infant is accountable for. The concept of a ‘cloud that distils a mirror’ represents the short-term, quick-lived connection in between mother and youngster due to her lack of sentiment and detachment. In addition, towards the end of the poem there is punctuation that suggests a slow pace, possibly representing the feelings Plath has towards her youngster due to the weight it appears to hold her down with. In addition, the fact that the window square ‘swallows its dull stars’ could imply that the youngster has altered her perception of nature and the beauty it is supposed to have inside it.

Several critics have argued that new mothers in the 1960’s would differ from Plath in the sense that they displayed a fantastic deal of happiness, satisfaction and joy from their new born babies whereas, Plath seemed to fully oppose this, due to the truth that she was purely honest about motherhood and the impact it has on the female brain and physique. This was argued due to the fact that mothers at the time had been deemed to be ‘unfit’ or ‘not right’ due to society’s expectations of ladies being filled with immense joy soon after providing birth. All in all, its really clear that Plath represented a brutally honest perception of how she interpreted motherhood throughout this poem.
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