25 Passages from The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath

Many of us know how much of a brilliant poet and writer Sylvia Plath is. I myself have read her books and poems in various sources and I admit that it is difficult to choose only twenty-five quotes to include in this post because almost every line she has written can make a good one.


It’s been only three days since I first laid my hands on The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath and I have not finished reading it yet but I am already itching to share with you some of the lines I found incredibly relatable, mentally stimulating and even haunting at times. I picked these excerpts very carefully; some of these have happened to me, some are ideas I thought of but couldn’t put into words and some are just beautiful sentences I happened to highlight in my book but I can assure you that all of these are philosophical and eternally rational. Let’s get started, shall we?

  1. You don’t give a damn about me except physically. Any boy would deny that; any gallant boy; any gallant liar.
  2. Before I give my body, I must give my thoughts, my mind, my dreams. And you weren’t having any of those.
  3. Women have lust, too. Why should they be relegated to the position of custodian of emotions, watcher of infants, feeder of soul, body and pride of man? Being a woman is my awful tragedy.
  4. All is spoiled by the fact that I am a girl, a female always in danger of assault and battery. God, I want to talk to everybody I can as deeply as I can. I want to be able to sleep in an open field, to travel west, to walk freely at night…
  5. Fifteen-thousand years of what? We’re sill nothing like animals.
  6. I don’t see how people stand being old. Your insides all dry up. When you’re young you’re so self-reliant. You don’t even need much religion.
  7. Girls, girls everywhere, reading books. Intent faces flesh, pink, white, yellow. And I sit here without identity: faceless.
  8. I have to exercise my memory in little feats just so I can stay in this damn wonderful place which I love and hate with all my heart.
  9. I want to live and feel all the shades, tones and variations of mental and physical experience possible in my life. And I am horribly limited.
  10. Perhaps that’s why I want to be everyone – so no one can blame me for being I.
  11. He has led you up behind the fraternity house to a clearing in the pines overlooking the city. The perfect place to discuss god and life.
  12. And you hate him because he has deprived you of that: walks and aloneness. And you hate him because he is a boy.
  13. Frustrated? Yes. Why? Because it is impossible for me to be God – or the universal woman-and-man – or anything much.
  14. She screams and rapidly puts lipstick on her own lips.
  15. At the traditional age of sixteen, you found out that a kiss was not as distasteful as once imagined.
  16. You felt no reality, no knife of sorrow cut your intestines to bits. Only a weariness, a longing for a shoulder to sleep on, a pair of arms to curl up in – and a lack of that now.
  17. That starts you feeling a little sorry. You won’t ever see her again. She won’t even remember you.
  18. I wanted to scream out in helpless fury at the hopeless inevitable going on of seconds, days and years.
  19. Will I never rest in sunlight again – slow, languid & golden with peace?
  20. This second is life. And when it is gone it is dead.
  21. Aloneness and selfness are too important to betray for company.
  22. A strange time, indeed, to compose letters is five thirty in the morning.
  23. If I did not have this time to be myself, to write here, to be alone, I would somehow, inexplicably, lose a part of my integrity.
  24. You’d much rather read anything but what you have to, but you do have to, and you will, although you’ve already wasted two hours writing stream-of-consciousness stuff in here when your stream isn’t even much to brag about, after all.
  25. Then bed, and again the luxury of the dark.

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Enjoyed reading these Sylvia Plath quotes? What’s your favorite Sylvia Plath quote so far? Let me know in the comments section below! 🙂

Before you go, I’d like to invite you to join me on Twitter (@MXCAREYES), Instagram (@BEYONZEH)and Pinterest (/MXCAREYES). See ya!

If you loved reading this, then you might like Sylvia Plath’s only novel called The Bell Jar. The novel is reviewed here in my blog so, if you like, you can read my review by clicking this link! 🙂

That is all! I hope you like these hand-picked Sylvia Plath quotes. See you in my next post!




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