`` The Day They Tied Me Up ``

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Sharon Olds was born in San Francisco on November 19, 1942. At age fifteen, she was sent to a boarding school in Massachusetts. Many of her poems focus on difficult childhood and the body. As Olivia Laing, literary critic of several literary novels and publications, says, “The physical body is a document of being, physical experience is the primary mode of forming, and physical contact is the primary human relationship.” Like Whitman, Olds celebrates the body in its pleasures and pains. She is a contemporary poet who focuses on autobiographical poems mostly of sexual or violent nature and personal experience. She particularly resonates with women readers and women’s connections with family members and lovers of the past and present through physical, sexual, and emotional means. She writes frequently about her sadistic, alcoholic father and victimized mother. Her dysfunctional family plays an enormous role in her poetry, especially in “The Day They Tied Me Up.” This poem is inspired by true events and the feelings and emotions felt by the poet during a memorable aspect of her childhood. When Olds was eight years old, she emptied a bottle of ink onto her parents’ bedspread and was tied to a chair as punishment. In perception by Maurice Merleau-Ponty, a French philosopher commonly associated with the philosophical movement of existentialism, he demonstrates “‘Olds’s serial return to the moment of this punishment within the space of the lyric poem is a formal method for

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