Eggplants, and: A Map, and: Late Empire

Eggplants, and: A Map, and: Late Empire EGGPLANTS / --After Amy Wilentz You must understand: we have done the Lord's work here since 1961. Eldon had just finished the seminary, and I was only twenty, though I suppose you're thinking you could never picture me as a girl, and sometimes I think I never was. You see the snapshot there: Eldon and I on the airport runway, coming in to Port-au-Prince, my absurd gray woolen suit to look like Mrs. Kennedy. And the heat and pillbox hat! Even Baptists wanted that day--like a hammer. I'll never forget how I prayed just for the strength to walk the tarmac into Customs. Then a night in a filthy hotel, and next day our ride up the Route Nationale-- just a gully, like a riverbed--to here. You journalists: I've seen your sort every year since Duvalier took power. You'll sip from your lemonade, so prim in that dress, so polite. But away from here you're a slut, and everything I say to your little machine "Mrs. Cunningham believes in prayer ..." will come out in print as lies, as ridicule. You'll see the hymns the congregation sings-- Amazing Grace in their own Creole-- as some fancy ironic symbol. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Missouri Review University of Missouri

Eggplants, and: A Map, and: Late Empire

The Missouri Review, Volume 14 (2) – Oct 5, 1991

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Publisher
University of Missouri
Copyright
Copyright © The Curators of the University of Missouri.
ISSN
1548-9930
Publisher site
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Abstract

EGGPLANTS / --After Amy Wilentz You must understand: we have done the Lord's work here since 1961. Eldon had just finished the seminary, and I was only twenty, though I suppose you're thinking you could never picture me as a girl, and sometimes I think I never was. You see the snapshot there: Eldon and I on the airport runway, coming in to Port-au-Prince, my absurd gray woolen suit to look like Mrs. Kennedy. And the heat and pillbox hat! Even Baptists wanted that day--like a hammer. I'll never forget how I prayed just for the strength to walk the tarmac into Customs. Then a night in a filthy hotel, and next day our ride up the Route Nationale-- just a gully, like a riverbed--to here. You journalists: I've seen your sort every year since Duvalier took power. You'll sip from your lemonade, so prim in that dress, so polite. But away from here you're a slut, and everything I say to your little machine "Mrs. Cunningham believes in prayer ..." will come out in print as lies, as ridicule. You'll see the hymns the congregation sings-- Amazing Grace in their own Creole-- as some fancy ironic symbol.

Journal

The Missouri ReviewUniversity of Missouri

Published: Oct 5, 1991

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