by Sylvia Plath
I am silver and exact. I have no preconceptions.
Whatever I see I swallow immediately
Just as it is, unmisted by love or dislike.
I am not cruel, only truthful ‚
The eye of a little god, four-cornered.
Most of the time I meditate on the opposite wall.
It is pink, with speckles. I have looked at it so long
I think it is part of my heart. But it flickers.
Faces and darkness separate us over and over.
Explanation … Here the speaker is the mirror. Through its voice, the speaker chooses to express her inner feelings. The opening line, ‘I am silver and exact,’ makes it abundantly clear. The mirror describes itself as an un-biased observer. It absorbs whatever image is incident on it, and reflects it very truly with no distortion or manipulation. It has no particular fondness or rancor towards anyone or any object. That enables it to reflect the images so faithfully and so correctly.
The mirror affirms that it has no feeling of vengeance or bias against anyone. Its commitment is only for truthful reflection of all that it sees. Such unwavering resolve for neutrality in observation can only be expected from God, not from any human being. So the mirror with its four corners feels that it is the eye of a ‘little’ God.
The mirror is hung on a wall. It stares at the pink, speckled wall opposite to it endlessly. It has no respite from looking at the same dreary wall. So, it is condemned to ‘meditate’ on the wall with no leeway to look elsewhere for a change. The image of the opposite wall has got embedded in the mirror’s heart. However, at times, the opposite wall’s image vanishes giving place to faces who peer into it. Also, the night’s darkness interrupts the gazing at the opposite wall.