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Hue and Cry by James Alan McPherson Day 6-7

February 20, 2021 | Hue and Cry

“Eric wrote small poems for her in the wet, white sand and she learned to memorize them very quickly, in the moonlight, before the white foam, pushed in by the inevitable sea, came up the beach to wash them away.”
Such transitory beauty in this relationship, and such irrevocable damage.

“These were the autumn days when the dialogue over making a revolution and a truly democratic society flowed loosely and desperately in the air…when everyone felt he had to make some movement, however slight or inconsequential, toward the attainment of goals not yet defined.”
It’s meaningful to read about this time this now.

“’You’ll see,’ he assured her. ‘Only people over thirty-five have this thing. If we can’t change them, we’ll just wait them out.’”
Everyone who was 35 years old in the summer of 1964 would be now be 92. Still waiting…

“’Don’t,’” he said, “’It was so beautiful. Don’t dirty it.’”
Because it was once so beautiful, it must be dirtied, and so she tries to destroy it.

I’m as struck by this work’s magnitude and scale as I’m frightened by its deep hopelessness. Who asks these solemn existential questions? Who sees Eric Carney, Margot Payne, Charles Wright? Who knows that Charles is coming into his morality as he fears looking at the bird after it has been crushed?

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