Ted Hughes in an interview with Eilat Negev in 1997:
“Every work of art stems from a wound in the soul of the artist. When a person is hurt, his immune system comes into operation, and a self-healing process takes place, mental and physical. Art is a psychological component of the auto-immune system that gives expression to the healing process. Plath tended to focus on the pain and scratch at the wound. If she had only been able to free herself from the one wound that wracked her, she might have changed, led a normal life, even perhaps felt healthy enough to stop writing.”
It’s easy to imagine that Hughes would need to think this, to believe their lives would have turned out differently if Plath had only been able to conquer her pain (much of which he caused). Later in the same interview, Hughes seems to be speaking of himself rather than the monumental Plath:
“When tragedy strikes, people struggle with it and incorporate it into their lives. But being a writer, these things are chewed all the time, because you write about them and they disturb you, and they keep appearing and dsappearing. They keep hanging on your neck, and you deal with the emotions again and again, as if it’s a broken record, stuck in the same monumental groove. And instead of letting go of the past and living for the future, you find your past in front of you. A monument sitting on your head.”
[…] For a later look into this fascinating creative life, see: Quoting Ted Hughes. […]
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