A Poem For Thursday

“Upon Looking into Sylvia Plath’s Letters Home” by John Updike:

Yes, this is how it was to have been born
in 1932—the having parents
everyone said loved you and you had to love;
the believing having a wonderful life began
with being good at school; the certainty
that words would count; the diligence with postage,
sending things out; the seeing Dreyer’s silent Joan
at the Museum of Modern Art, and being
greatly moved; the courtship of the slicks,
because one had to eat, one and one’s spouse,
that soulmate in Bohem-/Utop-ia.
You, dead at thirty, leaving blood-soaked poems
for all the anthologies, and I still wheezing,
my works overweight; and yet we feel twins.

(From Collected Poems, 1953-1993 by John Updike © 1993 by John Updike. Used by permission of Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of the Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, a division of Random House LLC.  All rights reserved.)