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"mirror" - Reflections of Truth

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Essay title: "mirror" - Reflections of Truth

“Mirror”: Reflections of Truth

In Sylvia Plath’s poem “Mirror”, the reader takes a look into the messages presented and compares them with the reflections that are cast in a mirror and images in a lake. When reading this poem, we discover that the speaker is the actual reflection that gives the interpretation of its views. The first interpretation is shown as a mirror on the wall “I am silver and exact. I have no preconceptions.” (1), second as the water in the lake because she states “Now I am a lake.” (10), and third through the eyes of an aging woman that is revealed in line 17 “In me she has drowned a young girl, and in me an old woman/ Rises toward her day after day…”

In the first stanza the reflection personifies the ability to take in what it sees without judging stating “I have no preconceptions/ Whatever I see I swallow immediately/ Just as it is, unmisted by love or dislike/ I am not cruel, only truthful…” (1-4). Many descriptions make the reader see through the eyes of the mirror as if it were able to speak back to him or her. The reflection views its surroundings in a manner of a small child who has the ability to take in or ingest whatever information is presented without regard. Visual imagery plays an important role in this poem and the descriptions make the reader immediately understand the truths within a mirror. In the water, the reflection portrays the shadow of a woman as she soul searches for who she really is in life. “Each morning it is her face that replaces the darkness” (16), because she can not find exactly what she is looking for in what she sees through the reflection. As a result, she reminisces about the lies that were told to her in the past, thinks about brief sensations with a flicker of doubt, and gazes through the shadows of the moon while she wanders about passing time aimlessly.

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