Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Push - a book review

Push, by Sapphire
Made into the movie, Precious

"I big, I talk, I eats, I cooks, I laugh, watch TV, do what my muver say. But I can see when the picture comes back I don't exist."  This is the voice of Precious, a 16 year old girl from Harlem, who's illiterate, sexually and physically abused by both of her parents and a mother of two.  Both children were fathered by her own father.

Her statement goes on to say she feels invisible to society - just like when you take a photo of a vampire.  They are there, but when the picture is developed, the truth is, they don't actually exist.

Precious longs to learn.  To be heard. "I wanna say I am somebody.  I wanna say it on the subway, TV, movie, LOUD."   And through her pen and paper - she does.

During Precious' second pregnancy, at 16 (first one at 12 years old), She is sent to an alternative school where it is discovered she is illiterate.  She finds comfort and strength through her teacher, Ms. Rain, and through the small class of only girls - all with horrific life stories and all illiterate.

They start from scratch - learning their ABC's, and doing their best to write in their journals.  The pen gives Precious the strength to remove herself from her mother's home and get herself and her infant to a half-way house.

Some may say that Precious' story is depressing, but I found it inspiring.  If you can remove the layers of pain and unjust from her and see HER, I think that you will also see Somebody special.

Here's a piece of Precious to take with you today:

everi mornin
by Precious j.

everi mornin
i write
a poem
before i go to
marY Had a little lamb
but I got a kid
an HIV
that folow me
to school
one day.

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