I don’t know if I will be able to write anything about this novel. For the past five days, I’ve been doing two full-time jobs. I am a trainee at the new one, a trainer at the old one.
Anyway, what goes on in my personal life is none of your business. Let us proceed with the real business. It’s Friday today and I have to do my duties as the rhapsodizer.
It’s Morrison’s turn. A Nobel laureate and a notable figure in the literary scene, a book lover has to read at least one of her novels. There are a lot of them, and most can be found on second-hand book stores. I chose to start with Beloved, mostly because it won the Pulitzer. It is supposedly her best work, and how did I find it?
Now that I think about it, the transition between my two jobs can be a little relevant. So what I remember about this book is Beloved. Well, Beloved is the name of woman. Wait, she is a ghost. She is, was, the daughter of a black woman. I forgot that woman’s name, but this woman has another daughter living with her. I forgot the daughter’s name as well.
So the human mother and daughter managed to get away from slavery. Aren’t you surprised that this has something to do about that subject? There’s also a little scene on bestiality. Specifically, public bestiality. No, public bestial orgy. Whatever. And something about burning slaves, some serious high-drama stuff.
Anyway, they are haunted by Beloved, whom I believe died when she was still a baby but managed to grow as a young adult in her ghostly existence. However, she’s a petulant young adult who only wanted to lie around and throw off tantrums. Not your ordinary ghost here.
You see, the human mother and daughter are trying to build a life founded on freedom, but this could not be possible because of Beloved’s meddling. Beloved is both a literal and figurative ghost in the lives of the two women. With Beloved throwing things around the house, upsetting everyone’s emotions, and basically keeping the human mother and daughter from moving on, things do not look promising.
But there’s still hope. There always is hope. Beloved may not have been exorcised in the ways that Catholic priests do, like that exorcism scene in The Exorcist, but she went away anyway. Taking a grip on reality solved it. That’s the real rite of exorcism.
And mother and daughter lived happily ever after. Hopefully.
I always keep this thought in my head: the future does not remember, past does not forget. Vice versa. I saw it in one of the music videos of Lene Marlin. So what’s the connection?
I think this novel is not at all about slavery. It’s just a part of it. It’s more about dealing with the present to get a hold of life. And when we talk about the present, the past and the future are always tagged along. They affect the present immensely. The present is the result of the past, but one can always change the present to design the future. It can be hard, but it is possible.
One can look at things from different angles, and there are lots of those. A seemingly bad past can be so beautiful. It’s how one looks at things. Therefore, one has the power to make it happen by shunning away all the negative vibes and surrounding one’s self with the positive.
So if you feel like you are stuck somewhere, deal with your ghosts. Make them run naked through the woods. Make them realize that they are supposed to be nowhere near the present. Conquer them, and live happily ever after.