Robert Lowell - Foreword to the American edition, 1966
Sylvia Plath becomes herself, becomes something imaginary, newly, wildly and subtly created - hardly a person at all, or a woman...
This character is feminine, rather than female, though almost everything we customarily think of as feminine is turned on its head. The voice is now cooly amused, witty, now sour, now fanciful, girlish, charming, now sinking to the strident rasp of the vampire...
Our voices echo, magnifying your arrival. New statue.
In a drafty museum, your nakedness
Shadows our safety. We stand round blankly as walls.
I'm no more your mother
Than the cloud that distils a mirror to reflect its own slow
Effacement at the wind's hand
lines from Lesbos
You have one baby, I have two.
I should sit on a rock off Cornwall and comb my hair.
I should wear tiger pants, I should have an affair.
I am packing the hard potatoes like good clothes.
I am packing the babies,
I am packing the sick cats.