“124 was spiteful. Full of a baby’s venom.”
One of my favorite books and one of my favorite opening line’s to a book.
The opening line to this book banned from the eye’s of the young (or so many try) due to language, racism and sexuality. But it’s the reek of the heat it speaks of or the cold that take’s place or the memory, hurt, pain, caged animal, sexuality, human touch that fills the pages.
What a mother will do to save her children in the face of the danger she saw. And how she will even go about it. This is a huge part of the story that just makes you feel. Makes you know….it doesn’t even sound that she had it “that bad” but who can say who anybodie’s “that bad” in life really is? (in only comparison) What their limits are? The same goes for the story of the husband after they were separated and parted…the butter. Here is where is get’s strong for me, in these parts. The parts that make people do crazy things in crazy ways only because of the most human parts within them.
The story of the baby haunting it’s mother…well, this can be so very true. In so many ways…even if only within the mother’s heart.
But the way Morrison brought this baby back to life is something simply…this is story telling, divine writing. And that she wasn’t nice to have back…but the spell she cast at the same time for her mother regardless, what a guilt will make you live with…even for her sister who saw through it all…again, Morrison brings in the human, the heart and the real life to the story of fiction and you are left on the edge of your seat wondering what next.
The story of “after Slavery” is beautiful…and so broken but beautiful. The line “Sethe. me and you, we got more yesterday than anybody. We need some kind of tomorrow.” was the line that made me cry…tears of oh holy fucking tears cry.
And in the end “It was not a story to pass on.” She knew how to end as well as to begin.
I would love to sit and heave tea and talk about WHERE Toni Morrison WAS when she wrote this one…this must have taken so much out of her…or breathed so much in. I don’t know which. Maybe both at times. Personally, banned or not, it’s a book that as a youngster I would have understood…I did as I read it for the first time about the age of twelve. And reading it again in my twenties and then a third time in my thirties each time I got the message…and each time I got more of it.
This is a book that you felt what was there to be felt.