by Anne Sexton
Cinderella Wealth Quotes
How we cite our quotes: (Line)
Mama! Mama! My turtledove,
send me to the prince's ball!
The bird dropped down a golden dress
and delicate little gold slippers. (58-61)
Cinderella isn't fit to go to the ball, and why not? Because she's poor. She must look wealthy in order to be noticed by the prince, so she has to wish for things that will make her look wealthy. A gold dress and shoes do the trick. Later the poem says that her stepfamily didn't even recognize Cinderella without her dirty face, which is another way of saying that wealth turns you into a different person altogether.
At the wedding ceremony
the two sisters came to curry favor
and the white dove pecked their eyes out. (95-97)
The stepsisters here are still trying to reap some of the benefits that come from knowing a royal family, and based on the rest of the poem, those benefits are almost surely monetary. The dove is having none of it: ultimate justice, in this poem, is measured by allowing or denying people wealth. Even though they come from a wealthy family, the stepsisters want more, and are punished for it.
never bothered by diapers or dust (3)
This quote toward the end of the poem brings back all the example stories at the beginning. The "diapers" and "dust" are reminiscent of the duties of the nursemaid and charwoman, and more generally of the things wealthy people don't have to deal with. Saying that Cinderella and the prince are "never bothered" by these dirty things is, in part, saying that they were very rich.