A Tidewater Morning is a collection of three short stories by William Styron, author of Sophie's Choice. They were originally published in Esquire magazine and collected in 1993. Each story has the same protagonist, Paul Whitehurst. The three stories are: Love Day; Shadrach; and A Tidewater Morning.
In Love Day, Marine Lieutenant Paul awaits word to invade Okinawa in 1945, and dreams ofhis mother, whose sickness caused unrest in his family. He feels himself unready to die.
In Shadrach, the young Paul meets an old former slave who has returned to the home of his former owners to die. Paul's conceptions about slavery and death are challenged as Shadrach exerts his will to see the place where he spent his own childhood.
In A Tidewater Morning, young Paul confronts the shadow of death face-to-face. The lessons he will learn in the future are far away and he has no realistic method of coping at this young age. His father, meanwhile, copes by renouncing God.