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Today Google pays tribute to one of America’s greatest writers, Zora Neale Hurston, on the 123rd anniversary of her birth.  She was a folklorist as well as an author, and I love the echoes of the oral tradition of storytelling in the rhythms and language of her writing.  The beautiful opening lines of Their Eyes Were Watching God are  haunting:

Ships at a distance have every man’s wish on board. For some they come in with the tide. For others they sail forever on the horizon, never out of sight, never landing until the Watcher turns his eyes away in resignation, his dreams mocked to death by Time. That is the life of men.

Now, women forget all those things they don’t want to remember and remember everything they don’t want to forget. The dream is the truth. Then they act and do things accordingly.

And is there a better description of love at first sight?

Janie looked down on him and felt a self-crushing love. So her soul crawled out from its hiding place.

Halle Berry and Michael Ealy starred in the film version, produced by Oprah Winfrey.

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