‘I am I, with all the individuality of an earthworm.’

– Sylvia Plath, The Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962

‘I was nauseated at the sight of bobby pins. I would not touch them. Once, on the day I was going home from the hospital after having my tonsils out, a woman in my ward asked me to carry some bobby pins to the lady in the next bed. Revolted, I held out a stiff unwilling hand, flinching as the cold clammy little pins touched my skin. They were cold and shiny, as with grease, and sickeningly suggestive of warmth and disgusting, intimate contact with dirty hair.’

– Sylvia Plath, The Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962

‘Antoine St. Exupery once mourned the loss of a man and the secret treasures that he held inside him. I loved Exupery; I will read him again, and he will talk to me, not being dead, or gone. Is that life after death – mind living on paper and flesh living in offspring? Maybe. I do not know.’

– Sylvia Plath, The Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962

‘I am not content, because my lot is limiting, as are all others. People specialise; people become devoted to an idea; people “find themselves.” But the very content that comes from finding yourself is overshadowed by the knowledge that by doing so you are admitting you are not only a grotesque, but a special kind of grotesque.’

– Sylvia Plath, The Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962

‘to learn that you might-have-been more of an “artist” than you are if you had been born into a family of wealthy intellectuals. + to learn that you can never learn anything valid for truth, only momentary, transitory sayings that apply to you in your moment, your locality, and your present state of mind. + to despise money, which is a farce, mere paper, and to hate what you have to do for it, and yet to long to have it in order to be free from slaving for it. + to know that millions of others are unhappy and that life is a gentleman’s agreement to grin and paint your face gay so others will feel they are silly to be unhappy, and try to catch the contagion of joy, while inside so many are dying of bitterness and unfulfillment + to take a walk with Marcia Brown and love her for her exuberance, to catch some of it, because it’s real, and once again love life day by day, color by color, touch by touch…’

– Sylvia Plath, The Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962

‘Today is the first of August. It is hot, steamy and wet. It is raining. I am tempted to write a poem. But I remember what it said on one rejection slip: After a heavy rainfall, poems titled RAIN pour in from across the nation.’

– Sylvia Plath, The Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962

‘I may never be happy, but tonight I am content. Nothing more than an empty house, the warm hazy weariness from a day spent setting strawberry runners in the sun, a glass of cool sweet milk, and a shallow dish of blueberries bathed in cream. Now I know how people can live without books, without college. When one is so tired at the end of the day one must sleep, and at the next dawn there are more strawberry runners to set, and so one goes on living, near the earth. At times like this I’d call myself a fool to ask for more…’

– Sylvia Plath, The Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962