Photo of Sylvia Plath from Gordon Ames Lameyer Papers

These recordings of American poet Sylvia Plath were made in late 1962, just a few months before she died. In them she reads from Ariel, the collection she left on the kitchen table to be found with her body. It is fascinating to hear her deliver, with her clipped New England vowels, the exact internal rhymes and rhythms she must have intended for each poem. She sounds mature – not at all girlish – and confident. She sounds angry.