Sylvia Plath Is in Paris with a Balloon on a Long String
By Amy Newman
its tricolor streamers floating and trailing.
It takes up the air like a determined child.
Plath was riding her horses of need,
and then breaking them, one by one.
The horse of loneliness, the horse of panic.
The horse of the Sacre Coeur’s calcite-and-rainwater white
piped on Montmartre like a wedding cake.
The horse of the wallpaper powdered with rosebuds.
The horse of weeping in the charming vestibule.
The horse of the park’s green geometry,
of the mushroom’s black underpleats.
The horse of the lily-of-the-valley’s chaste bell.
The horse of the prickly thin storm about to be,
of the cool cottons of the hotel bed
and his beautiful body, golden, lean,
and the horse of having been so close,
and then changing his mind.
The horse of her will like a planet, irrefutable,
distantly tethered to the bestial earth, and Paris
splayed and blazing around them, as if illustrated.
The day after Christmas was not as warm as Christmas itself, but it still doesn't feel like winter except for the bare trees and early sunsets. We watched some of the college bowl games in the morning while doing chores, then had lunch with Adam and went to Great Falls. I thought it might be muddy, but although the water was very brown, there was no flooding and the paths were in good shape. Despite the date being near the end of December, we saw a turtle as well as squirrels, ducks, vultures, and a great blue heron.
Christine came over for tofurkey roast, and because she had never seen it, we watched Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, plus the featurette on the music that first inspired Adam to take violin lessons over a decade ago. It will surprise no one to hear that the movie is still a thing of beauty and unlike that year's Oscar winner, ROTK, never gets boring for a moment. Now we've just watched Washington clinch the NFC East title and a playoff spot, such a stunning turnaround from the start of the season!