As you all recall, Toni Morrison was the subject of a Words of Wisdom post from July 2018. In that post, I shared some of my favorite quotes from her, and I commented on how her words sweep me up every time I open one of her novels. Her encouragement, to write the book that we want to read, is one of my biggest inspirations behind my own writing practice.
It broke my heart to hear that she became an ancestor on August 5, 2019. As much as it hurt to know that I’d never be able to tell her, face to face, how much I love her writings, I believe that she had done her work, and deserves her rest. So may she continue to rest, and may her words continue to inspire us to be better versions of our selves.
If you aren’t already familiar, now would be a fantastic time to acquaint yourself with some of Ms. Morrison’s work. My favorite is probably Sula, but The Bluest Eye and Beloved are also fantastic reads. Her last novel, God Help the Child, has gotten great reviews (I haven’t read it yet, but it’s on my list).
I also saw a book of Toni Morrison quotes that I’m adding to my wish list. It has 365 quotes: perfect for daily reflections.
Such a beautiful cover
How fortunate we are that we get to enjoy and learn from Ms. Morrison even as she rests eternally! I hope that you check out her works for yourself!
“A star dies in heaven every time you snatch away someone’s dream” – Gloria Naylor
I first became acquainted with Gloria Naylor’s work when I was a child. My mother, aunt and grandmother all loved the mini-series, The Women of Brewster Place. They skipped past any parts that were too mature for me, but I distinctly remember certain parts of the heart wrenching story of a group of residents living in low-income housing. I was far too young to understand what the movie was really about, but I remember being in awe of the beautiful women on the screen.
Years later, I learned more about Naylor herself, and I was inspired by her story. She had a sheltered childhood and finished college later in life (at the age of 31), and fell in love with literature while in college. Inspired by some of my heroines, like Zora Neale Hurston, Alice Walker, and Toni Morrison, Naylor decided to write about the experiences of Black women, and from this came her novel, The Women of Brewster Place.
Naylor’s body of work is not very expansive but it’s key in capturing the essence of the period: her stories reflected urban experiences for Black women in the 1980s and 1990s. The works would probably come across a bit “dated” at this point, but that doesn’t minimize their importance. I intend to add some of her books to my personal collection, as I’m inspired by the bits of her writing that I’ve read so far.
That’s it for today. I hope you all have a great day, and I’ll talk to you tomorrow!
(Photos courtesy of IZQuotes, Washington Post, and Pinterest)
What would literature be without Toni Morrison? Her poignant stories seamlessly weave the past with the present, the natural with the supernatural, the sacrosanct with the profane. I’ve found myself going back to “Sula” and “The Bluest Eye” to reread certain passages and become once again swept up in Morrison’s moving language.
Morrison has published 11 novels, and I fully intend to read them all. Every page is full of vivid imagery and powerful dialogue. One doesn’t read Toni Morrison’s books: one becomes part of Morrison’s world.
There’s a lot to love about Morrison. She wrote “The Bluest Eye” while raising two children post divorce. She published “The Bluest Eye” at the tender age of 39. She had to wake up at 4 AM to do her writing, but she got it done, and her efforts paid off.
She speaks candidly about the importance of writing and why we must tell our stories. She shares profundities on life and love. And she tempers all of her works with humor, grace and timeless charm.
I could sing Morrison’s praises forever and it wouldn’t be enough. So let me just say, if you are so inclined, make sure to read one of her books. I suggest you start off with “The Bluest Eye”: after all, it was her first book! Then move on to “Sula” and think about your closest friend: it will make you want to reach out to him/her and hold them close. Read some of her work and just watch your soul grow: it’s inevitable.
Thanks for stopping by, and enjoy the rest of your day! I’ll chat with you all tomorrow.
(Photos courtesy of Pinterest, TheQuotesIn, QuotesFav, Goalcast, and LegendsQuotes)