Powerful poetic and prophetic words that so capture the promise and terror of the move from the South to the North. Isabel has written about how the title of the book was ultimately selected in an interview on her website. These lines were written by Richard Wright as part of Black Boy, his autobiography published by the Book of the Month Club. Originally, the book covered both his childhood in Mississippi and his move to Chicago. The Book of the Month Club asked him to eliminate the Chicago section of the book. He agreed to do that and had to write an alternative ending. Isabel writes in the interview, “As soon as I saw it, I knew I wanted to excavate it. I felt it was poetry, beautifully rendered but invisible, buried as it was in the footnotes.”
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