One of Anne Sexton’s Sexiest Poems About Sex

When people think of successful female poets of the 20th century, it’s usually a dead tie (no pun intended) between Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton. Both were gorge, both were students of poet/professor Robert Lowell,  both were married with two children each, both pushed sexual boundaries in their work, both suffered from depression, both killed themselves by carbon monoxide poisoning, and both left incredible artistic legacies. But one fellow student of theirs describes Plath’s work at that time as “perfect” with a “virginal, unborn feeling,” while Sexton “was writing warm poems” that “seared, hot with feeling.” Sexton’s poem below, about the beautifully ironic nature of human love, seems to bear that out:

When Man Enters Woman

When man,
enters woman,
like the surf biting the shore,
again and again,
and the woman opens her mouth with pleasure
and her teeth gleam
like the alphabet,
Logos appears milking a star,
and the man
inside of woman
ties a knot
so that they will
never again be separate
and the woman
climbs into a flower
and swallows its stem
and Logos appears
and unleashes their rivers.

This man,
this woman
with their double hunger,
have tried to reach through
the curtain of God
and briefly they have,
though God
in His perversity
unties the knot.

Okay, we know you want to compare her to Plath:
Read Sylvia’s Ode to Young Love Here


  1. I read the poem and beneath that when I read that OK we know you wanna compare her to Plath so read ….. It was hilarious , coz precisely getting the mindset of reader, so sound and educated guess psychologically.

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