In this poem the poet, Sylvia Plath explains how the mirror is our true reflection and can be our best critic. She personifies the mirror by making the mirror the narrator of the poem. The mirror asserts that it is silver in colour and exact in appearance. It holds no opinion about the objects that come before it.
In comparison to human the mirror does not have any emotions like love or hatred. The mirror insists that it is not cruel but only truthful. It is proud that it reflects nothing but the reality. The mirror claims to be God’s eye that sees an object from all the angles. When there is no one looking at the mirror, it usually mediates looking at the opposite wall which is pink and worn out. The mirror explains that it has looked at the opposite wall for so long that it now feels that the wall is the part of its heart. The mirror also compares itself to a lake which may not be silver but has the quality to reflect the object as a mirror does. When a woman bends over the lake and looks her real appearance in it, she is dissatisfied with the reflection seen.
The mirror considers the candles and the moonlight as liars because their dim light deceives her by concealing her flaws and her age. Mirror asserts the fact that it reflects faithfully what it sees without hiding anything. But the women does not like what the mirror and starts crying. She finds it hard to believe that she is aging and losing her beauty from the mirror’s reflection. Despite being hurt by the harsh truth, the mirror is important to the women and that’s why she comes again and again to look herself in the mirror.
The mirror that sits in darkness finds every morning the woman comes to check herself in the mirror. The woman has been looking herself in the mirror since she was a young girl. It appears that she has drowned (lost) her youth in the mirror. The mirror is also synonyms for the passage of time. As the days progress along with her (age) she now compares herself with a terrible fish out of water that struggles for its existence. The terrible fish represents old age and death drawing closer to her. Thus in this poem Sylvia Plath has personified the mirror as God, as a lake, even as terrible fish.