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Choose either the poem “How can You,” (p. 6), or “Walking a Tight Rope” (p.27), or any other poems from the book, “It’s hard to be a Black Man in America and other African American Poems,” By Elroy Alister Esdaille, and connect it to one of the themes from A to M, or one of the quotations from 1-23 from pages 132-163 from Toni Morrison’s “The Bluest Eye,” and discuss how they relate or connect to each other. You should use at least one or more lines from the poem. (At least 250 words).
Themes and Motifs
Music and sound
Everybody Gave them orders
Beat with one hand and stole with the next
Accepting pain, while ignoring its presence
Paying insurance forever
Cultivating hatred for Darlene
Small, Black, and helpless
Free just like a musician
Dare to love without reason
“Ain’t no Samson never come to no good end” (Morrison, p. 133).
“God was a nice old white man, with long white hair, flowing white beard, and little blue eyes that looked sad when people died and mean when they were bad” (Morrison, p. 134).
“Music slithered over the cane fields and into the pine grove; it spiraled around the tree trunks and mixed itself with the pine sent, so Cholly couldn’t tell the difference between the sound and the odor that hung about heads of the people” (Morrison, p. 135).
“Everybody in the world was in a position to give them orders. White women said, ‘Give me that.’ White men said, ‘Come here.’ Black mean said, ‘Lay down.’ The only people they need not take orders from were black children and each other.” (Morrison, p. 138).
“They beat their children with one hand and stole from them with the other” (Morrison, p. 138).
“Squatting in a canefield, stooping in a cotton filed, kneeling by the river bank, they had carried a world on their heads” (Morrison, p. 139).
“They were old enough to be irritable when and where they chose, tired enough to look forward to death, disinterested enough to accept the idea of pain while ignoring the presence of pain” (Morrison, p. 139).
“ ‘The house belongs to some white folks in Clarksville.’ … ‘Seems a shame. She been paying on that insurance all her life’ ” (Morrison, p. 142).
“His feelings about her were mostly fear—fear that she would not like him, and fear that she would” (Morrison, p. 145).
“There was no mistake about their being white; he could smell it” (Morrison, p. 147).
“With a violence born of total helplessness, he pulled her dress up, lowered his trousers and underwear” (Morrison, p. 148).
“He cultivated his hatred of Darlene. Never did he once consider directing his hatred towards the hunters” (Morrison, p. 151).
“They were big, white, armed men. He was small, black, helpless” (Morrison, p. 151).
“His subconscious knew what his conscious mind did not guess—that hating them would have consumed him” (Morrison, p. 151).
“It seemed to him that lonely was much better than alone” (Morrison, p. 151).
“The insults were part of the nuisances of life, like lice” (Morrison, p. 153).
“He searched the faces and saw only eyes, pleading eyes, cold eyes, eyes gone flat with malice, others laced with fear” (Morrison, p. 154).
“ ‘I’m your boy’ … ‘tell that bitch she get her money’ ” (Morrison, p. 156).
“He was pushing through a world of invisible pine sap that threatened to smother him” (Morrison, p. 157).
“Only a musician would sense, know, without even knowing that he knew, that Cholly was free” (Morrison, p. 159).
“Abandoned in a junk heap by his mother, rejected for a crap game by his father, there was nothing else to lose” (Morrison, p. 160).
“Why did she have to look so whipped? She was a child—unburdened—why wasn’t she happy ” (Morrison, p. 138)?
“How dare she love him? Hadn’t she any sense at all” (Morrison, p. 161)?
You are required to respond to at least one student’s post. (At least 50 words).