A stiff breeze lifted the hair from my head. At my feet, the city doused its lights in sleep, its buildings blackened, as if for a funeral.
It was my last night.
I grasped the bundle I carried and pulled at a pale tail. A strapless elasticized slip which, in the course of wear, had lost its elasticity, slumped into my hand. I waved it, like a flag of truce, once, twice. . . . The breeze caught it, and I let go.
A white flake floated out into the night, and began its slow descent. I wondered on what street or rooftop it would come to rest.
I tugged at the bundle again.
The wind made an effort, but failed, and a batlike shadow sank toward the roof garden of the penthouse opposite.
Piece by piece, I fed my wardrobe to the night wind, and flutteringly, like a loved one’s ashes, the gray scraps were ferried off, to settle here, there, exactly where I would never know, in the dark heart of New York.
-Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
When I was 16, I read a book that would forever change my experience with literature. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath entered my life at the perfect time. A story of a young woman, a writer, making her way in society while battling her own mind absolutely mystified me. Although I have never personally struggled with clinical depression, Plath made Esther’s story and thoughts so real that I have felt forever connected with the character. Although while I was studying English in college, a lot of my professors and peers gave Plath a really hard time, she has continued to have a lasting presence in my literary psyche.
As I headed out for some outfit photos (always courtesy of Chad), I grabbed a package from our mail slot from my dear friend Megan. I was so excited to see that she had sent me a copy of The Bell Jar with this passage carefully highlighted. It was such a thoughtful gift, and I’m glad that we can share this book and our love of literature.
[more info at http://www.aflatteringtale.com]