She spent most of her childhood in Boston. Her second child, Joyce Ladd Sexton, was born two years later.
Anne was raised in comfortable middle-class circumstances in Weston, Massachusetts, and at the summer compound on Squirrel Island in Maine, but she was never at ease with the life prescribed for her.
Her father was an alcoholic, and her mother's literary aspirations had been frustrated by family life. Anne took refuge from her dysfunctional family in her close relationship with "Nana" Anna Dingleyher maiden great-aunt who lived with the family during Anne's adolescence.
Sexton's biographer, Diane Middlebrook, recounts possible sexual abuse by Anne's parents during her childhood; at the very least, Anne felt that her parents were hostile to her and feared that they might abandon her.
Her aunt's later breakdown and hospitalization also traumatized her. Her inability to concentrate and occasional disobedience prompted teachers to urge her parents to seek counseling for her--advice her parents did not take.
In they sent her to Rogers Hall, a boarding school in Lowell, Massachusetts, where she began to write poetry and to act. After graduation she briefly attended what she called a "finishing" school. Anne's beauty and sense of daring attracted many men, and at nineteen she eloped with Alfred "Kayo" Sexton II, even though she was engaged to someone else at the time.
Then followed years of living as college student newlyweds, sometimes with their parents. Later, during Kayo's service in Korea, Anne became a fashion model.
Her infidelities during her husband's absence led to her entering therapy. In Anne gave birth to a daughter, and Kayo took a job as a traveling salesman in Anne's father's business.
Depressed after the death of her beloved Nana in and the birth of her second daughter inSexton went back into therapy. Her depression worsened, however, and during times when her husband was gone, she occasionally abused the children.
Several attempts at suicide led to intermittent institutionalization, of which her parents disapproved. During these years, Sexton's therapist encouraged her to write.
Her poetry became central to her life, and she mastered formal techniques that gained her wide attention. Like such other so-called confessional poets as W.
Snodgrass and Robert Lowell, Sexton was able to convince her readers that her poems echoed her life; not only was her poetry technically excellent, but it was meaningful to the midcentury readers who lived daily with similar kinds of fear and angst.
In Sexton unexpectedly lost both of her parents, and the memory of her difficult relationships with them--so abruptly ended--led to further breakdowns.
Poetry seemed the only route to stability, though at times the friendships she made through her art, which led to sexual affairs, also were unsettling.
Her marriage was torn by discord and physical abuse as her husband saw his formerly dependent wife become a celebrity.The HyperTexts English Poetry Timeline and Chronology English Literature Timeline and Chronology World Literature Timeline and Chronology This is a timeline of English poetry and literature, from the earliest Celtic, Gaelic, Druidic, Anglo-Roman, Anglo-Saxon and Anglo-Norman works, to the present day.
A classic fairy tale takes on a whole new perspective in Anne Sexton’s poem, Cinderella.
Sexton’s perspective on the acclaimed childhood story is fairly different than what popular culture and the media wishes to present. Before Caedmon collected these lesser-known poems recorded readings of “Daddy” and “Lady Lazarus” had already been released on the compilation record The Poet Speaks in Listening to Plath read these poems may prompt you to pull out your own editions to read them for yourself, whether again or for the first time.
Editors JASON SANFORD Ranking online magazines and journals | Review: Novel and Short Story Writer’s Market (Fall ) Josie Fowler and her final book (Summer ) Myths, Legends, and Tall Tales: One Southern Boy’s Ramblings with Mike Resnick | Confessions from the man who single-handedly destroyed poetry as we know it!
| . Anne Sexton has been a favorite poet of mine since high school. The imagery from her vulnerability with poetry was the first of it's kind back in the 50's and 60's.
Olio, by Tyehimba Jess (Wave Books). For a distinctive work that melds performance art with the deeper art of poetry to explore collective memory and challenge contemporary notions of race and identity.