A Christmas Memory Vs. The Grass Harp Essay, Research Paper
The two stories, A Christmas Memory and The Grass Harp are strikingly similar due to the fact that Truman Capote wrote both stories. The settings of both stories are very similar. In The Grass Harp the setting is very sullen: the season is fall, the days are always cloudy, and it is very slow moving in a small southern town. Similarly, A Christmas Memory has dismal and sluggish qualities of a southern, rural community in the dead of winter. The first lines of A Christmas Memory immediately establish the sad scene: Imagine a morning late in November. A coming of winter more than twenty years ago. Several elements of the story are parallel: the settings, the nature of the friendships, the rejection by peers, and the characters love of nature.
The relationships between Colin and Dolly in The Grass Harp, and Buddy and Cousin in A Christmas Memory are close regardless of the differences in age. In A Christmas Memory, Buddy and Cousin have a large age split: Buddy is seven and Cousin is in her sixties. In The Grass Harp, Colin and Dolly have a similar age difference. But they are close friends, because they do many things together. They lived in the tree together, as well as dancing with each other. Likewise, Buddy and Cousin have a close relationship and do many things do together. Buddy and Cousin make fruitcakes, find a Christmas tree, and make presents for each other. Buddy describes his relationship with Cousin by stating, We are each other s best friends. Not only are the friendships in A Christmas Memory and The Grass Harp parallel, but the main characters lives are quite.
The main character of each story is a young boy. In A Christmas Memory, Buddy is the main character. In The Grass Harp, the main character is Colin. He is close to fifteen years old. He has no parents and no friends of his own age. He experiences great separation and sadness in his life. In the same way, Buddy has no parents, and his only friend is Cousin, a woman in her mid-sixties. They are best friends, and Buddy frequently refers to her as my friend. My friend has a better haul, says Buddy, describing his Christmas presents in comparison to Cousin s. When Cousin as Buddy if he is awake, he responds, It is my friend, calling from her room… Buddy once again refers to Cousin as his friend. Another way in which these characters are alike is that both boys leave at the end of the story, though for different reasons. Buddy leaves because he is forced to go to military school. Colin leaves because he is sad over the death of Dolly, his best friend. For these reasons the boys are very similar.
The boys also have many instances in which they are separated or isolated from both their peers and their pages. Colin and Buddy are both rejected by their peers. As a result they are friends with older people. When Colin goes to live in the tree, he is separated from his school and community. He is also isolated from the outside world. Colin also experiences separation in The Grass Harp. At the end of the story he loses his best friend Dolly and then leaves the place were he lived. Similarly, Buddy is isolated from society; he is never at school and no one ever comes to visit him at his home. At the end of A Christmas Memory Buddy is sent to a military school by the people who live in the house with him. He comments about his separation from Cousin, Life separates us. Those who Know Best decide that I belong in a military school. All these events of separation cause loneliness and sadness in both stories. The emotions in both The Grass Harp and A Christmas Memory can be related back to the setting, because the setting and emotions are sad and morose. Truman Capote s characters are very similar, possibly because these stories are about Capote s own life.