The livid, frustrated poem, "Daddy" by Sylvia Plath, is about a young woman who is forced to remember the death of her father. In the poem, Plath creates a formerly naive speaker, who adored her father, who passed away and was replaced with someone who possessed the same character traits: the speaker's husband. The absolutely cruel diction used in the poem describes the intense nature of the relationship the speaker had with the one she once loved through use of literary elements, such as imagery, metaphors, hyperboles, and rhyme scheme.
Plath's imagery throughout the poem is extremely vivid. She uses diction that gives reader's a clue of the types of emotions the speaker keeps throughout "Daddy". Plath uses examples of Nazis and the Holocaust to direct every thought and emotion towards her caregiver. In the poem, the speaker says, "Daddy, I have had to kill you" (6), forming an image of the speaker being overrun with thoughts of her father. She has to live with the obsessive image of the death of her now hated father. The speaker has to deal with issues she wants to get rid of, like the domination of death and the trauma she has to endure in the future. Plath has the speaker characterize her father with words such as:.
I have always been scared of you,.
With your Luftwaffe, your gobbledygoo.
And your neat moustache.
And your Aryan eye, bright blue.
Panzer-man, panzer-man, O You-.
Not God, but a swastika.
So black no sky could squeak through.
Every woman adores a Fascist,.
The boot in the face, the brute.
Brute heart of a brute like you. (41-50).
Symbolizing the intensity of the speaker's angry and irate emotions towards the betrayal of her "daddy", who is similar to the Nazis. The speaker sees herself as a victim, as said in, "I began to talk like a Jew/I think I may well be a Jew" (34-35), in retrospect to the Holocaust in 1939 to 1945. Towards the end of the poem, the speaker begins talking about freedom, in a way.