In "A Christmas Memory," what does the phrase "rather like hearts, a lost pair of kites hurrying towards heaven" communicate about Capote's feelings toward his friend?

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beateach eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Truman Capote describes his raw emotions at the end of his short story “A Christmas Memory.” He writes, “As if I expected to see, rather like hearts, a lost pair of kites hurrying toward heaven.” At this point in the story, Buddy is away at military school when his friend dies.

Earlier in the story, Capote describes how the pair escapes the frustration of Christmas morning by flying their homemade kites in a nearby pasture. It is one of those times that Buddy treasures, and holds dear in his heart. They are a pair of lost souls who find comfort in simply spending time together.

The pair shared such a deep connection that Buddy feels her passing even before he receives a message confirming it. With his friend’s passing, Buddy is broken-hearted. He feels that a part of him is taken, “letting it loose like a kite on a broken string.” As he walks across the campus, he looks heavenward and imagines that he might see the two kites that are symbolic of their relationship ascending heavenward.

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A Christmas Memory

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