Love Letter to Sylvia by Julia Clark

A Friday night, thinking about death.
Tightened at my friend’s
inability to articulate a conflict.
Loosen fist grip in nonchalance to nobody.
Eyes twitchy.
I read Plath to relax.
Her letters signed Sherry
and dotted with love hearts.
Advice: if you identify with Sylvia Plath, seek medical assistance.
Her freedom on a bike,
penchants for telling stories,
and fear of chocolate-induced acne
symptoms of the underlying disease:
talented, ambitious, female.
She smelled of apricots
not cookie-dough or Lysol,
and ate voraciously,
preferring the single camp stove to
her reliable kitchen set.
Reading her correspondence about bicycle repairs,
I wonder would I have loved her then as I do now?
Would her confidence have matched the flickering shine in my eyes?
the flickering shine in my eyes?

Julia Clark is a writer, poet, and PhD student living in Sydney. Her criticism and non-fiction has appeared in RabbitAudrey JournalArcher, and Bone Bouquet but she is most known for her theatre reviews in Night Writes. Her poetry has appeared in ScumARNAHoni Soit, and Bull Magazine. She is interested in commodity aesthetics and object relations particularly as applied to the body as the centre of consumption. If she’s not reading or writing, she’s at the theatre. You can read more of Julia’s work at

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