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Your Clothes

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Of course they are empty shells, without hope of animation.
Of course they are artifacts.

Even if my sister and I should wear some,
or if we give others away,

they will always be your clothes without you,
as we will always be your daughters without you.

Source: Poetry

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This poem originally appeared in the March 2000 issue of Poetry magazine

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Your Clothes

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  • Poet and essayist Judith Kroll is a seminal Sylvia Plath scholar and noted translator. Kroll earned a BA at Smith College and a PhD at Yale University.
     
    Spare and intimate, Kroll’s lyrical poems explore themes of loss and attachment. Her poetry collections include Our Elephant & That Child (1991) and In the Temperate Zone (1974). Her poetry has been anthologized in The Weight of Addition: Texas Poetry Anthology (2007), A Contemporary Reader for Creative Writing (1994), and Understanding Poetry (1976).
     
    Her groundbreaking critical study Chapters in a Mythology: The Poetry of Sylvia Plath (1976, revised edition 2007), an adaptation of her PhD dissertation, was the first full-length book of scholarship on Plath’s work and is considered a classic of criticism. Keenly interested in Indian literature and culture, Kroll lived in India for a decade and translated, from Kannada, U.R. Anantha Murthy’s Bhava (1998).
     
    Kroll has received...

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