A strange thing happens to a man when he reads too much Sylvia Plath*. It usually begins following a short but impacting spiritually naked caress with Emily Dickinson Good Morning-Midnight or Jean Rhys’ Good Morning, Midnight. You are beyond your Rimbaud Season In Hell, in recovery, have trampled all the flowers of evil, the Spring has bought nothing but your Gide, your Celine your Journey To The End Of The Night. The French consume you with some Sinistre Liberation, with some Death March, with some wild selfish avaricious appetite and lust you swath through petty society folk and addicted romance and feel both strong and challenged, and bored and disappointed, but all the time vain & vein and kill hearts and proclaim Give Me No Pain or Give Me New Pain. I Can Take It All. Find New Wounds For All These Mirrors And Bottles I’ve Broken Along The Course and so lance towards the Ecstatic West! And the Coast!—it’s sublime. It is never what you imagine it to be. It sadly never is, or it is all you ever imagined and sadly all it ever is.
You are let out on this beach and there is a sigh, there is a respite. There is a sexless sweetness to the air that you cannot challenge and there is nothing to conquer and there is every wave dumping your pathetic reflection back at your feet forever and behind you there is only one tree, a palm, up on a cliff that you have already cross beyond, progressed beyond.
And in slips Sylvia Plath with this new pain elixir, like moon milk finally come to vanquish the lingering ghosts of shouts in your exhausted throat.
*Me, probably any winter circa 2000 - 2004.