“But their eyes were watching God.”
Before my review of Their Eyes Were Watching God tomorrow, I thought I’d share one more beautiful passage from the book.
Janie Crawford and her husband are living near the Everglades in Florida when a hurricane comes through. They board up in a building with several others who didn’t leave town.
“They huddled closer and stared at the door. They just didn’t use another part of their bodies, and they didn’t look at anything but the door. The time was past for asking the white folks what to look for through that door. Six eyes were questioning God. Through the screaming wind they heard things crashing and things hurtling and dashing with unbelievable velocity.”
A few paragraphs later…
“The wind came back with triple fury, and put out the light for the last time. They sat in company with the others in other shanties, their eyes straining against crude walls and their souls asking if He meant to measure their puny might against His. They seemed to be staring at the dark, but their eyes were watching God.”
You’ll notice the title in that last sentence.
Zora Neale Hurston’s writing is simply beautiful. I don’t know how else to say it. She’s visual and poetic and emotional and philosophical. A lot of great writers are a good at one or two of those, but she does it all.
I can see myself there in that dark room, watching the door, waiting on the full force of that hurricane to arrive, wondering if this is “my time” and God is ready to take me away. She captures that moment of fear and uncertainty so well.
Obviously, I loved Their Eyes Were Watching God. My review is coming tomorrow.