As an artist myself, a form of art such as painting or drawing comes assumedly natural. It has been something I’ve always excelled in to an extent, my calling perhaps, or my forte, as any passionate writer would say about writing , or a painter of painting. A work of art can be something that can come from an artist’s emotion whether it be pure elation or absolute anguish, human emotion comes natural to us humans, as does art to artists in most cases.
In the selected passage (lines 42-51) of Sylvia Plath’s Lady Lazarus, Plath describes dying as something that comes natural to her, an artform she excels in, her calling. In the first two lines Plath states that dying is a form of art and clearly lets the reader know she has had more than one encounter with death. Earlier on in the poem Plath compares herself to a cat with nine lives to let the reader know that at this was written at the time of her third encounter with death.Order now
She almost boasts of her knowledge in the subject of death, letting the reader know how much experience shes had in the area already. In lines 47-48, “I do it so it feels like hell.. I do it so it feels real… “, Plath implies that her attempts at suicide could serve as replacement for a lack of emotion or to mask intense pain. Plath’s words are so personal that in reading one cannot help but almost feel her exquisite agony or the agony she might have felt in lacking emotion. “… I guess you could say I’ve a call… , in this line Plath makes it obvious to the reader she believes dying is her fate, she gives the feeling that she believes it to her strong point, something she excels in, or, her forte.
This idea is highly ironic because one would think the art or dying is the last subject a person would want to excel in. While Plath states dying might be her calling she doesn’t necessarily sound thrilled about the idea, but approaches the idea with a more sarcastic tone, while at the same time accepting the idea of dying whole heartedly.
In lines 49-51 Plath goes on to let the reader know how easy the art of dying comes to her, she belittles the endeavors of dying, telling the reader how simple she believes the task is to complete. The reader already assumes Plath has attempted suicide on more than one occasion and in the last line of the passage (51) Plath compares dying to the art of acting, a different form of art, also possibly eluding to some glamour that appeals to her in the idea of dying. This also suggests how important dying might have become to her, like any personal work of art is to the artist who created it.
In reading this poem I couldn’t help but feel Plath’s unadulturated wish to die and feel nothing but utter sorrow for her, however, Plath wants the reader how well rounded she is in the art of dying, how easy it is for her, as if she a painter and death, her paint. Plath wants the reader to know she considers death a form of art, and herself a very talented artist in that aspect, death is as simple as writing is for a writer. It is as if shes telling the reader she can go at anytime, its just that easy for her, this to her, is her calling.