Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Beloved Toni Morrison

I read Beloved, Song of Solomon, Tar Baby and Sula within two years. There was something about her voice that inspired me.  There was a rhythm and a style in her work that transported me. Her dedication to exploring African American life was a model for how I would explore various communities that I identified with.  

In 1993, when I first started studying writing, my writing teacher Ayofemi Folayan was ecstatic.  

"Toni Morrision won the Nobel Prize!" she said.

"Cool," I said, but I was hiding the fact that I was unfamiliar with her and her work.  If she won the Nobel Prize, I guess I should know who she is.  I started with her master piece Beloved, the tale of a black woman who kills her children rather than have them become slaves. 

I didn't know such story telling could exist.  I became a different person, a better writer because of her. Thank you.

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