McCullers’ Light

“The soft gray of the dawn had lightened and the sky was the wet pale blue of a watercolor sky just painted and not yet dried.”

“It was the time of afternoon when the bars of sunlight crossed the back yard like the bars of a bright strange jail.”

“In the gray of the kitchen on summer afternoons the tone of her voice was golden and quiet, and you could listen to the color and the singing of her voice and not follow the words.”

I blogged about Carson McCullers last Friday, and now as I continue reading The Member of the Wedding, I am struck by her descriptions of the summer days experienced by 12-year old Frankie. That watercolor sky would not be so memorable if McCullers had not told us it was still wet. And when she talks about the bars of sunlight, I can see them slanting into Frankie’s yard. She is a master of writing the atmosphere in this story which McCullers once referred to as a fugue.

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