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Transcript of ABC Book
''The poor creatures perched on the bottom barely moving, obviously pinning away for flight''(27).
Coca-Cola shows how people of different color could also be similar. Lily and August discover that they like to drink Coca-Cola by adding peanuts into it. This shows how people of different color are not that different and that people can be similar, why are they treated unequally? It also shows that in life, some things could travel extremely far and how many experiences could possibly be learned. Coca-Cola bottles could travel to far places, just like how people can travel and endure the hard times.
''Once I'd gotten a bottle from Massachusetts, which I kept as a tribute to how far something can go in life''(139).
After May dies, August and June mourn and Lily can't find the chance to tell August the truth. This is significant to the story because during the time when August and June are mourning, Lily finally gathers the courage to tell August the truth, yet she can't. August shut down taking care of the bees because she was too upset over May's death. May's death had caused the entire house to feel upset over the loss of her. It shows how upsetting losing someone can be, how it can affect the lives of the others that are still living.
After Lily receives this notebook, she writes down stories and her feelings inside. This notebook is a present Zach gave her, it symbolized how both Zach and Lily should work towards their goals together. They should pursue their dreams and jobs that they want and not give up. Lily writes down the events that occur and her feelings, it's a way of story-telling and in this notebook, lies many feelings. She keeps writing to her heart's content and has so many stories to tell about her life. As the story comes to an end, it shows how Lily never stops writing, she writes down all the stories and her heart never stops talking.
Secret Life of Bees
Lily had endured T-Ray's tempers and punishments that he had given her. T-Ray did not act how a normal father would act towards his daughter. The amount of times that he had made her kneel on grits made it seem like part of her daily life. By enduring all of T-Ray's punishments and harsh temper, Lily might have been fed up. Perhaps she was sick and tired of how T-Ray treated her and decided to finally leave when she had the chance. If Lily had not endured the way T-Ray treated her, she would not have gotten to August's house and would not have found the answers to her questions.
''He narrowed his eyes like he was trying to follow all this, I was breaking every rule of successful lying''(196).
''Two days later, after we had run ourselves into the ground harvesting the rest of the honey, Zach showed up with the prettiest notebook-green with rosebuds on the cover''(135).
''You should have seen how August and Rosaleen fussed over me the rest of the evening. You want some root beer, Lily? How about a feather pillow? Here, swallow this spoon of honey''(112).
''You have never heard such music, how it made us believe death was nothing but a doorway''(201).
''My knees had been tortured like this enough times in my life that I'd stop thinking of it as out of the ordinary; it was just something you had to put up with from time to time, like the common cold''(25).
''You know that saying ''Birds of a feather flock together''? That's how I felt''(140).
''My palms would split the seams of the gloves, and I would never wear them again''(171).
''I reached out and traced black Mary's heart with my finger. I stood with the petals on my toes and pressed my palm flat and hard against her heart''(164).
''It ended with a story about how black people from Tiburon, Florence, and Orangeburg were marching today all the way to Columbia asking the governor to enforce the Civil Rights Acts''(166).
''She stopped right in the middle of the song, and I was left in the silence with my hand stretched out''(111).
''We were waiting for a let-up so August could show us our new quarters in the honeyhouse, a converted garage in the back corner of the yard painted the same hot-flamingo shade as the rest of the house''(75).
''I've just never heard of a Negro lawyer, that's all. You've got to hear of these things before you can imagine them''(121).
''After May's burial August shut down honey making, honey selling, even bee patrol''(214).
''The end-all mystery inside the bag was a small wooden picture of Mary, the mother of Jesus''(14).
''Was it unthinkable he could speak one of them to me, even the one reserved for lesser things like peanuts in your Coke''(159)?
''Translation: Anything would be better than you staying in a colored house''(197).
''I would study ''Tiburon, S.C.'' on the back of the black Mary picture, the funny slant of the lettering, and wonder what sort of place it was''(14).
''In a matter of seconds I knew exactly what I had to do-leave''(141).
''Rosaleen came home, a bona fide registered voter in the United States of America''(283).
''I wouldn't be surprised if May's wailing wall outlasted us all''(302).
''I wanted to make her love me so she would keep me forever''(44).
''This is what I know about myself. She was all I wanted. And I took her away''(8).
''I was crying, I realized, for Zach''(128).
August has acted like Lily's second mother ever since Lily stayed at her house. She is the one who accepted Lily into the house and taken care of her. August is a warm and accepting person, she helps Lily throughout her journey of finding answers. She taught Lily how to take care of bees and nursed her when she was sick. When Lily told August the truth, she was caring and helped calm Lily down. August helps guide Lily to find her answers and is like a mother to Lily, like she was to Deborah.
The bees in the jar symbolize how Lily is trapped by T-Ray. The bees show a part of Lily's life and how they want freedom. Yet, when the jar is open, they do not fly away immediately, as if pondering whether to or not. This is similar to Lily's situation because she has a chance to run away and like the bees, she ran from where she was being trapped. Throughout the story, the bees continue to symbolize how Lily's life is progressing. Bees need a queen in order to do their jobs, just like how Lily wishes she had a mother to shower her with love.
This is significant to the story because after May died, June had played sorrowful music. This shows how death can come suddenly and unexpectedly. How death was just a part of life and you just have to live it. June had always played sad music but after sad event, it seemed to impact everyone even more. Death could always happen, whether an accident or not, it is just another event in life. Like a path you walk towards everyday and could have the option to pursue it anytime.
August and Lily both have common traits even though they differ in skin color. This quote shows how a white person could be similar to a colored person. No matter what color they are, you could possibly have similar traits. Everyone should be treated fairly, but because colored people have a different skin color, they are treated differently. In truth, they actually are not that different from white people and are more similar than you think. However, white people have a different opinion and that is the reason why there is struggle because of segregation in the story.
The gloves are a memory of Lily's mother, Deborah. They are one of the few objects that are left which can remind Lily of her mother. However, soon Lily would grow up and the gloves would no longer fit her. Lily is afraid that if this happens, the memories she has left of her mother would soon be like the gloves, gone. All Lily every wanted since she was young was her mother, she had always believed that she was the reason her mother died. These gloves are one of the precious items that are left that could remind her of her mother, and she does not want to separate from them.
Every since Lily saw Black Mary, she felt a connection towards her. Black Mary continues to act as a symbol of motherhood for Lily. As the story continues, Black Mary helps Lily find her answers in life. She is the mother that is inside Lily and Lily seeks guidance from Black Mary. At the beginning of the story, Lily found a picture of Black Mary in the items that her mother left behind. Black Mary was one of the clues that led Lily to August and her family, how she started her journey to search for answers.
This action upsets August and shows the difference of treatment between black and white people during this time. Black people from Tiburon, Florence, and Orangeburg wanted to enforce the Civil Rights Acts because of the unfair treatment between people of different skin colors. This is significant because many of the events that happen in the story are discriminating against black people just because of their skin color. Everyone should be treated equally and therefore, the black people want to ask the governor to enforce the Civil Rights Acts so that they could receive better treatment. This caused August to be upset because people are still being treated unfairly just based on their skin color. They do not see how even people of different colors, could be so similar, yet separated just because of skin color.
Ever since Lily showed up at August's house, June had been the one to dislike her. June tries to cause a lot of difficulties for Lily throughout the story. As the quote shows, she stopped the song just because Lily was of different skin color. June feels as if Lily should not be with them because she is white, she is different. However, as the story progresses, June and Lily realize that just because they are of different skin color, does not mean they can't be similar. June finally accepts Lily, just because she was Deborah's daughter doesn't change anything, everyone is different in their own way, but can be similar in others.
August accepted Lily and Rosaleen, she brought them under her care. August was the one who agreed to help Lily when she told them they needed a place to stay. If August wasn't nice enough to let them stay, Lily might not have found the answers she had been searching for. August taught Lily many things when Lily was under her care and acted as a mother to Lily. August showed Lily and Rosaleen to where they would stay, even though June protested against them staying. This trait of August is the reason why Lily was able to stay and find answers to all the questions that had been on her mind.
Zach wants to be the first black lawyer, he continues to follow his dreams despite his skin color. This is significant to the story because during this time period, black lawyers were unheard of. If Zach wanted to be a lawyer, there would be people opposing this just because of his skin color. This shows that even though Zach knows the journey to becoming the first black lawyer is difficult, he continues to pursue his dreams. Even if people put him down and say that just because a Negro lawyer is unheard of, that doesn't mean that Zach will give up. He also has his rights as a black person and he will continue to pursue his dream until he reaches it.
Lily lies to the policeman, Eddie Hazelwurst about her being an orphan. Lily keeps telling lies in order to be able to stay where she is long enough so that she can receive the answers that she wishes to find. She lies to Mr. Hazelwurst and he continues to ask questions that are unrelated to the case of May dying. Lily lies to the policeman about her past before coming to Tiburon. If he had actually looked into this case more, perhaps he could find where she might have possibly come from and send her back to her dad. The significance is that because Lily lied that she is an orphan she will have to stick with that lie if she ever meets Mr. Hazelwursts again because he doesn't believe a white girl should be living together with a colored family.
The photograph is one of the last memories that Lily had that related to her mother. It was significant because Lily had never seen a black Mary before, she didn't realize that there was one. Her curiosity of wanting to know how the black Mary and Tiburon related to her mother, caused her to travel there. It was there at August's house that she found a figure of the Black Mary. Perhaps it was because of this and the Madonna Honey that caused Lily to realize this was where she would find her answers regarding her mother. The Black Mary acts as the mother that is inside Lily and helped guide Lily through finding answers in her life.
Lily's father, T-Ray doesn't act the way a normal father would to their daughter. His behavior and temper towards her was different from how others would treat their daughters. It was because of this that to Lily, it was unthinkable he could possibly even love her, even the love that was for lesser things. This is significant to the story because, if T-Ray had been a good husband and father then Deborah and Lily both wouldn't have ran away. If they hadn't then Deborah wouldn't have died so early and Lily wouldn't have to suffer during her childhood because of T-Ray's temper. If he had loved her, then he wouldn't treat her the way he did, and maybe the three of them could have been together as a happy family.
''I had nearly finished a glass of juice before I let myself look at the little highway of broken graham crackers and marshmallow bits that May was constructing across the floor, how it started at the sink and angled toward the door, thick with golden crumbs and smudges of sticky white''(172).
The roaches are the reason why Lily finds out that her mother, Deborah had lived there before. When Lily went to get a glass of juice, she found May luring the roaches out by using broken graham crackers and marshmallow bits. She remembered that T-Ray had once told her that Deborah had done this to lure the roaches out of the house. This is significant because Lily finally asks about her mother since she got to August's house. She asks May if there had been a Deborah and Lily finally is able to find out that her mother had not only met them, but actually lived with them. This is what led Lily to want to find out all the answers about how her mother relates to this place and what really happened back then.
This quote shows how Lily interpreted what Mr. Hazelwurst had said about Lily being with the Boatwright sisters. This is significant because it shows that back then the color of your skin meant a lot. People would judge you because of your skin color and you were treated different if you were colored. This plays a big role in the story because it shows how people are treated differently in the story just because of their skin colors. The time Rosaleen spit on those white men's shoes and the policeman let them beat her up in jail. The difference between skin color was important and if only people had really taken the time, they would realize we aren't all that different.
The quote shows that the photograph that Lily found had the words written on the back. This is how Lily came to the conclusion that her mother was somehow related to this place. She came here to find answers to all the questions that she had because it was written on the back of the photograph that she found. If it wasn't for this photograph that had Tiburon, S.C. written on the back, Lily could have possibly never found August as fast as she did. This place is extremely important because it's where Deborah went to when she was having trouble with her feelings. She came here to recover and this is where Lily found the answers to many of the questions that she always had in mind.
Lily ran away from her house because she knew T-Ray didn't love her. T-Ray didn't treat Lily right and because of that Lily didn't harbor any good feelings towards him. He was abusive and punished her all the time. Lily wanted to find the answers to her questions because T-Ray would never tell her much about her mother. There really was no good memories of being together with T-Ray for Lily and because of that she could leave and find the answers to the things she wanted to figure out. This is significant because if she was attached to the past, she wouldn't be able to leave and search for the answers she wanted to know.
This is important because Rosaleen registers to vote and this time, she finally becomes a voter. At the beginning of the story, Rosaleen was sent to jail because she was on her way to register to vote, but spit on the white men's shoes. They had looked mocked her just because of her skin color. Being colored caused her to be discriminated against and the white men didn't believe she should have had the right to vote. However, this time in Tiburon she finally got to do what she wanted to do. She could finally have her right to vote and this was extremely important to Rosaleen.
The wailing wall helped calm May down whenever she heard that something bad had occurred. If it wasn't for the wailing wall, then May could possibly have ended up like April even earlier. The wall had helped May calm herself down and mourn for the bad things that were happening around her. Even after May dies, Lily continues to feed the wailing wall with prayers and fresh rocks. This is significant because it helps pray for the sad events that occur and through the tough times, the wailing wall will continue to be exist. It will continue to move on in life, because perhaps other people may find it useful and use it to mourn for others that are in hard times.
August accepts Rosaleen and Lily, she lets them into the house and treats them like part of her family. Lily wants August to love her, so that August would keep them forever and they wouldn't have to go back to T-Ray. The way August treats Lily is like the way a mother treats her daughter. She teaches Lily many things about taking care of bees and they have many interesting conversations. This is significant because the way August treats them is important to how the story would have turned out. If August hadn't accepted them and kindly let them stay, then she wouldn't have heard the truth from Lily, about how she was Deborah's daughter.
Lily has believed she's the one who killed her mother since a young age. This is a reasons why Lily has suffered throughout her childhood. All Lily had wanted was a mother to care and love her, however she believed that she was the one that killed her. T-Ray had told her that it was an accident but she was the one who had killed her mom. This is significant because all throughout her life, she believes she killed her mom and this has an impact on her because she begs her mother for forgiveness at night. All Lily wants is a mother to love her and take care of her, and at the end of the novel, she finds many.
Zach is a colored boy who Lily meets when she stays at August's house. Throughout the story, Lily starts to develop feelings for him. Zach is significant to the story because he wants to be the first black lawyer and he encourages Lily to pursue her dreams too. Lily develops feelings for Zach and this is important because back then, there weren't couples of different skin color. Zach is the guy that is closest of age to Lily in the novel and both him and Lily help each other out. Zach tells Lily that when the time is right and they are allowed to be together, then they will.