Poems such as Pope’s Essay on Man and ..

I think this poem is amazing! I think the persona in the poem, which is the author, looks into the mirror and tells the truth, the story not as the mirror, but as the reflection in the mirror. She is afraid to admit the truth but once the image has reflected in the mirror the truth is unveiled. The woman is getting old and she knows it deep inside but still does not have the courage to admit it to her self.

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The last part of this poem changes the meaning of everything else in the previous lines. This poem is about the aging process and more specifically, the woman coming to the realization that, one day, she will die. Another interesting point to make about this poem is the aversion from the mirror to the lake. It is important to note the fact that Sylvia tried to drown herself. With that in mind, the water and the mirror have similarities (most notably the ability to reflect); but the lake can be skewed (i.e. ripples in the water).


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Hisrepresentative works include a collection of poems in the volume (Poetry, Poetry, 1938), (Perfume to the Wind, 1945), (TheNational Flag, 1945), an anthology (Xuân Diệu Anthology, 1983), a collection of short stories, (The Yellow Pine Pollen, 1939), diaries, essays, and literary criticisms.


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I really like this poem because it holds so much truth. My interpretation was that, this was simply a mirror telling the story of its purpose and existance. I think the mirror represented truth. It's the only place that you can find really find unbiased truth. We lie to ourselves, others lie to us and so I think that what Plath is trying to portray is that when you finally do see the truth, its too much to bear and that's why the woman in the story acts the way she does. This woman must look to others to determine her identity, but when she looks inside herself (the reflection in the lake), she realizes that she is not a great person and depends on what others say about her instead of trying to form an identity for herself. The 'mirror' says: I think this is the main point of the poem. The woman does not want to accept the fact that she is aging. Maybe she associates youth with beauty and thinks that she will lose her beauty as she gets older. Therefore, she looks to others, her peers, to comfort her by reassuring her that she is beautiful. But if she can't find it in herself, is she truly beautiful?

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I studied this poem during my course in poetry, and I really enjoyed it. What I'd like to add is that the last line of the 1st stanza of her poem(Mirror)reflected her old age as dark and separated her from others, in comparison to the 7th line of the same stanza which presents her youth in a pink colour.

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The last line of the poem reads "Rises toward her day after day, like a terrible fish," indicates that she feels insecure about her reflection. It is interesting that Plath chose a fish instead of any other animal. When Plath used a lake in place of a mirror she may have needed a creature that lived in a lake to compare her feeling of living in the mirror. She is trying to make to point that a fish depends on water the same way the woman depends on the mirror. Usually fish are very glamorous animals because they come in all different shapes and sizes, but the women in the poem contradicts that stereotype. She sees herself as a something terrible because of her fading beauty. Sylvia Plath suffered from depression and had very little compassion for herself. This poem shows how she was scared from the truth the mirror was showing her. Throughout this poem there is a theme of the truth and lies. The poem "Mirror" is about a women torn between the true picture of herself and the distorted image others see of her.