Ted Hughes

May 9, 2007


Born in Yorkshire, father was a survivor of WWI
Married Sylvia Plath in 1956 and had two children; Hughes had a notorious affair and they were separated at the time of Plath’s suicide
Hughes destroyed Plath’s later journals and was repeatedly defaced from her tombstone
Subject matter is often violence: was brone to depicting brutal acts, found predators and victims in nature and humanity
Wrote a new kind of children’s poem
Liked things that have a life outside of their own, and his
Darkenss usually overcomes light in a dualistic vision


Pike, three inches long, perrfect/ Pike in all parts, green tigering the gold./ Killers from the egg: the malevolent aged grin./ they dance on the surface among the flies.
Or move, stunned by their own grandeur/ Over a bed of emerald, silhouette/ Of submarine delicacy and horror./ A hundred feet long in their world.

One jammed past its gills down the other’s gullet:/ The outside eye stared: as a vice locks-/ The same iron in this eye/ Though its film shrank in death.
A pond I fished, fifty yards across,/ Whose lilies and muscular tench/ Had outlasted every visible stone/ Of the monastery that planted them-
Stilled legendary depth:/ It was as deep as England. It held/ Pike too immense to stir, so immense and old/ That past nightfall I dared not cast
But silently cast and fished/ With the hair frozen on my head/ For what might move, for what eye might move./ The still splashes on the dark pond,
Owls hushing the floating woods/ Frail on my ear against the dream/ Darkenss beneath night’s darkness had freed,/ That rose slowly towards me, watching.



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