Thursday, 13 January 2011

I am horribly limited

...What is my life for and what am I going to do with it? I don't know and I'm afraid. I can never read all the books I want; I can never be all the people I want and live all the lives I want. I can never train myself in all the skills I want. And why do I want? 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 (emphasis added).Yet I am not a cretin: lame, blind and stupid. I am not a veteran, passing my legless, armless days in a wheelchair. I am not that mongoloidish old man shuffling out of gates of the mental hospital. I have too much to live for, yet unaccountably I am sick and sad. Perhaps you could trace my feeling back to my distaste at having to choose between alternatives. Perhaps that's why I want to be everyone — so no one can blame me for being I. So I won't have to take the responsibility for my own character development and philosophy. People are happy - - - if that means being content with your lot: feeling comfortable as the complacent round peg struggling in a round hole, with no awkward or painful edges – no space to wonder or question in. I am not content, because my lot is limiting, as are all others. People specialize; people become devoted to an idea; people 'find themselves.' But the very content that comes from finding yourself is overshadowed by the knowledge that by doing so you are admitting you are not only a grotesque, but a special kind of grotesque. 
from Sylvia Plath's The Unabridged Journals (2000)

Avec Grégoire Leroy - Mon cœur pleure d’autrefois
Fernand Khnopff 1889


  1. What gut wrenching words. She couldn't contain, and she couldn't be contained.

    Your blog is beautiful.

    It's a pleasure to have you on the Rilke train with us.

  2. Dear Ruth,
    thank you for your inspiring words.
    The reason why I created this blog was mainly to be able to contribute to other blogs. Let's see where this journey will take us...

  3. A wonderful new addition to the world of blogging. Welcome.

    There are so many of us, all different, all feeling our way towards an understanding of ourselves. You will find many friends here.

    I am honoured that you should have chosen to follow Friko's Poems and Pictures. My main blog is Friko's World, where I post regularly. This blog also follows people, reads their posts and comments, whereas the poetry side of me is purely self-indulgent and takes little notice of others. If you feel so inclined, please visit me there too.

  4. Thank you for this. This challenge to find oneself is inspirational. I'm pleased to meet you here.


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