Sylvia Plath's Arrival Of The Beebox Essay

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In a number of her poems, Sylvia Plath expresses a concern with the need to be in control. The speaker is often invested with power and is placed beside the underlying fear of being over ridden by the 'other'. In order to maintain an authorative position, she confronts with the 'enemy' and ponders on the unknown, leaving readers inexplicably drawn by the experiences described. Yet Plath's other preoccupations are contrary to the investiture of power in the poetic voice, where the main subject is placed at the victimization by the opposition - whether it be a male figure, a baby, an insect or mushroom. It is also apparent in some of Plath's poetry to begin with a lack of hope which then invert to a simple, affirming statement.

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The male subject is directly confronted by the company voice, 'Are you our sort of person?' as the starting question of several to befit the role as husband. The repetitive line, 'Will you marry it' and the same words in the last line emphasizes Plath's value in society's attitudes towards wholeness in life, where marriage creates an equilibrium, therefore is the 'last resort'. But in contrast, the speaker in 'The Arrival of the Beebox' has more than one way to overcome her duty to the bees as she does not out rule 'they can die, I need feed them nothing…'. Consequently, the speaker restores her power and in personifying 'sweet God', she decides she 'will set them free'. Readers are left to wonder if one can control the world.

While the speaker in the poem clearly professes her dominating role, she is also threatened by the bees - the 'Roman mob'. Her exclamation, 'small, taken one by one, but my god together!' reveal an instinctive fear of being usurped by these 'minute' creatures and supports Plath's concern of invasion. To be even more precise, it suggests that things which appear to be harmless can unpredictably 'dangerous', and preparation is essential. Readers undoubtedly gain a replicated message in 'Mushrooms'. The 3-line stanzas , shorter-line ends and continuous rhythm may differ from that of 'The Arrival of the Beebox', but similarly demonstrate the power of numbers. The mushrooms, even though they are 'meek', 'edible' and otherwise seem

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