The Fig Tree


Do you ever find yourself obsessed with a thought? A quote? Perhaps, a poem? Over the past few months, I’ve found myself constantly thinking of a quote by Sylvia Plath. Back in May, I read The Bell Jar for the first time. It was a book that I had wanted to read for years and years, but never got around to it. While I have many thoughts on the book, this isn’t a review, but a post to share this quote with you.


Here it is…

“I saw my life branching out before me like the green fig tree in the story. From the tip of every branch, like a fat purple fig, a wonderful future beckoned and winked. One fig was a husband and a happy home and children, and another fig was a famous poet and another fig was a brilliant professor, and another fig was Ee Gee, the amazing editor, and another fig was Europe and Africa and South America, and another fig was Constantin and Socrates and Attila and a pack of other lovers with queer names and offbeat professions, and another fig was an Olympic lady crew champion, and beyond and above these figs were many more figs I couldn’t quite make out. I saw myself sitting in the crotch of this fig tree, starving to death, just because I couldn’t make up my mind which of the figs I would choose. I wanted each and every one of them, but choosing one meant losing all the rest, and, as I sat there, unable to decide, the figs began to wrinkle and go black, and, one by one, they plopped to the ground at my feet.”

-Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar

It is a relatable picture, isn’t it? I mean we all have our own figs hanging off of a fig tree. I’m sure you know this already…life can be overwhelming, and while we dedicate a lot of energy and time to certain “figs,” others aren’t given enough attention. You’re probably thinking of something right now that you’d like to pay more attention to or dedicate more time to.

For me, that something is poetry. I’ve been working so much the past few months, I haven’t had as much time to dedicate to writing my poetry or even attending readings for that matter. Thankfully, the end of the month will bring me to my Frost Place Poetry Seminar Adventure. I’ll be gone for one whole week and will surely be fully immersed in poetry.

Thoughts on the quote? Tweet me @AWritersWay.

Until next time,


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