An in-depth review of Sylvia Plath and her poem, "Point Shirley".

Essay by seanrussLCollege, UndergraduateA, April 2002

download word file, 3 pages 3.8

Sylvia Plath is an American writer whose well-known poems are carefully written pieces distinguished for their personal imagery and intense dialogue. Written in 1960, "Point Shirley" is a poem in which the details are more important than the actual time and place that the events occurred.

Sylvia Plath is an American writer whose best-known poems are carefully crafted pieces noted for their personal imagery and intense focus. She was born in Massachusetts in 1932 and began publishing poems and stories as a teenager. By the time she entered Smith College, Plath had won several poetry prizes that led to her becoming a Fulbright Scholar in Cambridge, England. However, on February 11, 1963, Sylvia Plath committed suicide due to problems existing within a troubled marriage. Her novel, The Bell Jar, was first published under her own name in the United States in 1971, despite the protests of her family.

Plath's Collected Poems, published in 1981, won the Pulitzer Prize.

Throughout her short life, Plath loved the sea. She spent many of her childhood years on the Atlantic coast just north of Boston. This seascape provides the source for much of her later poetic imagery, among these is "Point Shirley".

In Sylvia Plath's "Point Shirley," she tries to create a vivid image in the reader's mind as to what the New England coast looks like. In doing so, she sends a depressing image that helps to set the tone for the next stanza where her grandmother is found dead. In the absence of the grandmother, the sea is slowly breaking down the house. Although the aggressive sea is unable to destroy the house in the grandmother's presence, it does begin to wear down after the absence of the grandmother sets in.

The title of the...