Black Women Writers @ Southwestern University

An English / Feminist Studies / Race & Ethnicity Studies Course Blog



Well for starters I really enjoyed reading Salvage the Bones, but of course I always yearn for more. :/ However, unlike Walker’s ending in The Color Purple, Ward’s was real, raw, and unhinging. The poetry throughout the entire novel was phenomenal..and I listened to it using an audio book and whoa. The descriptive imagery and personification made it so real and artistic and magnificent. I just kept thinking, “Failed poet????” HOW.

I look back to my childhood and I remember hearing about Katrina and raising money in my class for victims, but I never realized the severity. As I read I wondered why my mom didn’t tell me all about it. She’s very progressive but for some reason I can’t recall an explicit lecture. I mean I wish she had told me about the fact that the government screwed up with the levees and that the storm actually missed them. I wish she had told me about how long they were without food or clean water. Just thinking about it brings me to tears, because this is such a tragic moment in our US history. And there are so many adolescents who don’t pay their proper respects. Schools should still be actively working to fix homes and schools and libraries..but really just one home would make a difference.

I really enjoyed part 1 of the documentary we watched and intend to watch the other parts, but I have to recommend Trouble the Water since it’s told from first person, and she films days before the storm and days afterward. This way you get raw footage of everything that goes on. Here’s a clip from a song she made about her life (prior to Katrina). She lost everything in the storm, including family, but this one CD is hers, her one thing, just like Esche’s dad’s photos. 😥


2 thoughts on “realization

  1. I thought the video you posted was interesting, and it spurred my thoughts on significant objects. What do we consider significant ? What determines meaning ? I like that you connected the CD that the woman has to the photos that Esch’s father managed to rip from the drowning house.

    Our family sponsored and took care of a small family of survivors after the storm. We were living in Dallas at the time and I remember that each child had brought one object with them – one thing that they were able to salvage from their home as they fled.

    Personally, I’ve thought about this a lot – what object would I take ? What is most important to me ?

    There’s something so incredibly poignant and meaningful in the aftermath of a storm; the objects that people take with them have so much to show about who they are and the stories they’ve lived. I think to Esch’s father and all that the pictures hold for him and his family. I think of the teddy bear and the book that the girls brought into our home. I think of the woman singing her heart out to the song “Amazing” and how such small things hold such depth and beauty, even amidst the much and mire of a hurricane.

  2. It’s easy to distance oneself from natural disasters and to say things like, “Oh, well, it’s happening over there” and “It’ll be fine! I’ve stopped hearing things about it, so it’s probably okay”. But to see things like this, personal accounts from people who have their own dreams and talents and lives, changes things. I liked the video and I agree that her tape and Esch’s father’s pictures are a nice comparison.

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