Any figure that can negatively or positively affect a child’s outlook on life should choose their words wisely when addressing them. A child doesn’t need a dumbed down version of the truth or to be treated naively. Addressing any topic with a good explanation is the personal responsibility of any adult to a child. It’s evident that in the story “Gorilla, My Love” Hunca Bubba wasn’t just a name to Hazel, it was an entire personality. To know that her uncle’s real name is entirely different is like pulling the disguise off someone. Hazel’s entire dynamic has shifted with her Uncle. Had the adults kept this act up around Hazel perhaps they could have gifted her with ignorance but at least she wouldn’t have had such a misunderstanding when finding out her uncles’ real name. Another great example is when she is lied to about which movie they are going to end up watching. She expected to see Gorilla, My Love but they ended up showing a religious film named King of Kings. In this sort of example the children in the theater are naturally upset because they were lied to. If the adults could explain why they were showing the film instead of just trying to pull a wool over their heads perhaps the children wouldn’t cause a fuss and come to terms with the truth rather than a lie. This brings me back to my childhood when my parents would always say one thing and end up doing another. I remember vividly asking my parents “But why?” and they would always reply with “Because I said so.” It was extremely frustrating having no real honest answer and constantly filling the blanks in my own head. In “Gorilla, My Love” Hazel stood her ground and fought back lighting the candy stand on fire after the manager refused to give back a refund. These stories are a strong reminder that keeping the youth in blissful ignorance is a disservice to them and society. They are kept in the dark for so long that they eventually grow old and learn the truth and are exposed to an identity crisis that everything they know is a lie. The Youth deserve the truth.
I am from agriculture
and crisp autumn wind.
From bruised crab apples
and blue moon ice cream. `
I am from the utters of cows
and the milk they give.
I am from the chancla that my mom used to throw at me
and the cinturón my dad branded on me.
I am without a doubt from the words of self loathing,
but I am also from positive affirmations.
I am from the suburbs of late night trick or treating
and warm apple cider that was made with love.
I am from handmade tortillas
and queso fresco.
I am from my mom’s compassion
and my father’s mental decline.
I am from glochids
I’m from Waupun the land of the Ojibwe.