Because wherever I sat--on the deck of a ship or at a street café in Paris or Bangkok--I would be sitting under the same glass bell jar, stewing in my own sour air.
The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.
There is nothing like puking with somebody to make you into old friends.
I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery -- air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, This is what it is to be happy.
I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart. I am, I am, I am.
There is something suspect, especially in America, about people who don't have ten-year plans for a career or at least a regular job.
If the moon smiled, she would resemble you. You leave the same impression Of something beautiful, but annihilating.
If winter comes can spring be... We're nearer to spring than we were in September, i heard a bird sing in the dark of December, January, Febmar, aprimay, apricots, beneath the bough.
Sometimes I feel so stupid and dull and uncreative that I am amazed when people tell me differently.
The eyes and faces all turned themselves towards me, and guiding myself by them, as by a magical thread, I stepped into the room.
The moon is no door. It is a face in its own right,
White as a knuckle and terribly upset.
It drags the sea after it like a dark crime; it is quiet
With the O-gape of complete despair. I live here.
Stupid girl. You will never win anyone through pity. You must create the right kind of dream, the sober, adult kind of magic: illusion born from disillusion.
You will never win anyone through pity. You must create the right kind of dream, the sober, adult kind of magic: illusion born from disillusion.
And there's the fallacy of existence: the idea that one could be happy forever and age with a given situation or series of accomplishments.
I feel occasionally my skull will crack, fatigue is continuous -- I only go from less exhausted to more exhausted and back again.
Frustrated? Yes. Why? Because it is impossible for me to be God -- or the universal woman-and-man -- or anything much. I am what I feel and think and do. I want to express my being as fully
as I can because I somewhere picked up the idea that I could justify my being alive that way.
How long can I be a wall, keeping the wind off?
How long can I be
Gentling the sun with the shade of my hand,
Intercepting the blue bolts of a cold moon?
The voices of loneliness, the voices of sorrow
Lap at my back ineluctably.
How shall it soften them, this little lullaby?
Sometimes I feel like I'm not solid. I'm hollow. There's nothing behind my eyes. I'm a negative of a person. All I want is blackness, blackness and silence.
I liked looking on at other people in crucial situations. If there was a road accident or a street fight or a baby pickled in a laboratory jar for me to look at, I'd stop and look so hard I never forgot it.
Love set you going like a fat gold watch. The midwife slapped your footsoles, and your bald cry Took its place among the elements.
He was always saying how his mother said, What a man wants is a mate and what a woman wants is infinite security,' and, 'What a man is is an arrow into the future and a what a woman is is the place the arrow shoots off from, until it made me tired.
A terrible depression yesterday. Visions of my life petering out into a kind of soft-brained stupor from lack of use.
The door of the novel, like the door of the poem, also shuts. But not so fast, nor with such manic, unanswerable finality.
What obsession do men have for destruction and murder? Why do we electrocute men for murdering an individual and then pin a purple heart on them for mass slaughter of someone arbitrarily labeled 'enemy?'
There is a charge For the eyeing of my scars, there is a charge For the hearing of my heart -- It really goes. And there is a charge, a very large charge, For a word or a touch Or a bit of blood Or a piece of my hair or my clothes.
A fierce brief fusion which dreamers call real, and realists, an illusion; an insight like the flight of birds.
I am afraid of getting married. Spare me from cooking three meals a dayspare me from the relentless cage of routine and rote.
I could never be a complete scholar or a complete housewife ora completewriter: Imustcombinea little of all, and thereby be imperfect in all.
I couldn't stand the idea of a woman having to have a single pure life and a man being able to have a double life, one pure and one not.
With me, the present is forever, and forever is always shifting, flowing, melting. This second is life. And when it is gone it is dead. But you can't start over with each new second. You have to judge by what is dead. It's like quicksand... hopeless from the start.
I have this demon who wants me to run away screaming if I am going to be flawed, fallible. It wants me to think I'm so good I must be perfect. Or nothing. I am, on the contrary, something: a being who gets tired, has shyness to fight, has more trouble than most facing people easily.
Doing all the little tricky things it takes to grow up, step by step, into an anxious and unsettling world.
It is best to meet in a cul-de-sac, A palace of velvet With windows of mirrors. There one is safe, There are no family photographs, No rings through the nose, no cries.
I think writers are the most narcissistic people. Well, I musn't say this, I like many of them, a great many of my friends are writers.
The human mind is so limited it can only build an arbitrary heaven -- and usually the physical comforts they endow it with are naively the kind that can be perceived as we humans perceive -- nothing more.
A man's world is different from a woman's world and a man's emotions are different from a woman's emotions and only marriage can bring the two different sets of emotions together properly.
You must create the right kind of dream, the sober, adult kind of magic: illusion born from disillusion.
Bright beads of red are rising through the ink, Hearts-blood bubbles smearing out into the black stream.
Let me not be weak and tell others how bleeding I am internally; how day by day it drips, and gathers, and congeals.
I'm sarcastic, skeptical, and sometimes callous because I'm still afraid, deep down, of letting myself be hurt.
I looked on my stomach and saw Frieda Rebecca, white as flour with the cream that covers new babies, funny little dark squiggles of hair plastered over her head, with big, dark-blue eyes.
God, it was good to let go, let the tight mask fall off, and the bewildered, chaotic fragments pour out. It was the purge, the catharsis.
He taught me how to eat avocados by melting grape jelly and french dressing together in a saucepan and filling the cup of the pear with the garnet sauce.
There ought, I thought, to be a ritual for being born twice -- patched, retreaded and approved for the road.
The floor seemed wonderfully solid. It was comforting to know I had fallen and could fall no farther.
I collected men with interesting names. I already knew a Socrates. He was tall and ugly and intellectual and the son of some big Greek movie producer in Hollywood, but also a Catholic, which ruined it for both of us.
There I went again, building up a glamorous picture of a man who would love me passionately the minute he met me, and all out of a few prosy nothings.
What I didn't say was that each time I picked up a German dictionary or a German book, the very sight of those dense, black, barbed-wire letters made my mind shut like a clam.
The first time I saw a fingerbowl was at the home of my benefactress. ... The water had a few cherry blossoms in it, and I thought it must be some clear sort of Japanese after-dinner soup and ate every bit of it, including the crisp little blossoms.
I may never be happy, but tonight I am content.
I may never be happy, but tonight I am content. At times like this I'd call myself a fool to ask for more.
I wanted to crawl in between those black lines of print, the way you crawl through a fence, and go to sleep under that beautiful big green fig-tree.
I fancied you'd return the way you said,
But I grow old and I forget your name.
(I think I made you up inside my head.).
I hate Technicolor. Everybody in a Technicolor movie seems to feel obliged to wear a lurid costume in each new scene and to stand around like a clotheshorse with a lot of very green trees or very yellow wheat or very blue ocean rolling away for miles and miles in every direction.
Quotes by Sylvia Plath are featured in: