Friday, 16 March 2012

"Bell Jars, Sylvia, Ariadne and Me" (written before reading "The Bell Jar" - finished on 3 November 2011)

Bell-jarred, soul scarred - I see myself in you.

Sylvia, were you a natural

planner? Meticulous? Precise, like

the metaphors that bleed from your poetry?

I'm so not.


I was living my life

like a novel with no plan:

no self-prescribed synopsis

to restrict, guide, hinder,

support or confuse me.

I might try to make plans,

but it never ended up

working out that way.

I didn't know

what point I was

ultimately aspiring to reach here -

when it would come,

that moment: The End. Bold black lettering, in

a clear, plain font:

14pt, Arial or Times New Roman.

Still, today

I have woken up

feeling that this crazy despair

might evolve into calm


if I knew. Had a plan.

Yet, the mere prospect of possible future calm

is sometimes enough in itself,

just to take the edge off.

A synopsis isn't inflexible -

and it can alter.

Bell-jarred, soul scarred -

I feel myself

in your printed lines.

Do you realise that

I wasn't even born - or supposedly, thought of -

in 1963?

Several years ago,

a friend gave me a copy

of "The Bell Jar",

which - by apparent chance -

I found yesterday.

I never read it -

your novel -

but maybe I will.

And recently,

another friend's poetry

made me realise - believe -

that if I could only understand



I might find the key.

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