Edge

The woman is perfected.   
Her dead

Body wears the smile of accomplishment,   
The illusion of a Greek necessity

Flows in the scrolls of her toga,   
Her bare

Feet seem to be saying:
We have come so far, it is over.

Each dead child coiled, a white serpent,   
One at each little

Pitcher of milk, now empty.   
She has folded

Them back into her body as petals   
Of a rose close when the garden

Stiffens and odors bleed
From the sweet, deep throats of the night flower.

The moon has nothing to be sad about,   
Staring from her hood of bone.

She is used to this sort of thing.
Her blacks crackle and drag.

Sylvia Plath, “Edge” from Collected Poems. Copyright © 1960, 1965, 1971, 1981 by the Estate of Sylvia Plath. Editorial matter copyright © 1981 by Ted Hughes. Used by permission of HarperCollins Publishers.
Source: Collected Poems (HarperCollins Publishers Inc, 1992)
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