What are three traits of Kira in Gathering Blue? How can you prove each one with her actions, thoughts, and words?

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Lois Lowry's novel Gathering Blue, Kira has both intelligence and imagination, courage, and talent.

1. Imagination

While her mother is alive, Kira tells the children creative stories that captivate and entertain them, and she teaches them games. Kira is also a reliable helper to her mother in the weaving shed. Her mother praises Kira for her imagination:

"The stories you tell to the tykes, the pictures you create with words — and with thread! The threading you do! It is unlike any threading the people have ever seen. Far beyond anything I could do!" (Ch. 1)

As it turns out, creativity and imagination are held in high esteem in Kira's society.

2. Courage

After Kira's mother dies, Kira remembers her advice to take pride in her pain. "You are stronger than those who have none." This statement proves to be true when Vandara challenges Kira for her spot after her mother's death, telling her "Your space is gone." Because Kira refuses to give way to Vandara, Vandara picks up a rock, as do others. Kira summons memories of what her mother or father would have done in such a situation, and she then bravely challenges the women:

"Remember that if conflict is not taken to the Council of Guardians, and if there is a death..." She heard a murmur. "If there is a death..." (Ch. 2)

A woman repeats in "an uncertain, apprehensive voice" what Kira has said. "Kira waited. She stood as tall and straight as she could." Then, the women lay down their rocks out of their fear of the repercussions of taking aggressive action against Kira, and Vandara decides to take the matter up with the Council of Guardians.

3. Talent/Creativity

At the Council of Guardians, Vandara presents her arguments against Kira. When she is questioned at this Council, Kira is humble and respectful as she touches the cloth she has woven in her pocket, a cloth that has one of her creative patterns.

Her mother used to make repairs to the Singer's robe, an ancient garment worn for a very special ceremony when the Singer would perform the Ruin Song. Kira recalls helping her mother, and after a while, her ability surpassed her mother's teaching:

....without instruction or practice, without hesitancy, her fingers felt the way to twist and weave and stitch the special threads together to create designs rich and explosive with color. (Ch. 4)

Because of this talent, Jamison, who acts as her defender before the Council, concedes that Kira does drag her leg and she is slow. However, he points to her exceptional talent, as well. At the conclusion of the hearing, the chief guardian awards Kira's spot to Vandara; however, Kira is then given an important position. She is told to gather her things because she will be taken to her new quarters in the Council Edifice where she will live. Kira will work on the Singer's robe as a seamstress.

mkcapen1 | Student

In the book Gathering Blue by Lois Lowery, Kira is a young girl who should have been put to death according to the laws of the community.  Kira has a disability.  She has one side of her body that has a leg that drags behind her and causes her pain and discomfort.

Kira's mother had taught Kira to be as strong and independent as possible.  She taught her how to be a weaver and learn from her.  She is a strong and determined young lady.  After her mother's death she goes off on her own, but right away she begins to think of the things that she will need and have to do to survive.

"Somehow she would build a cott.  Then she would find a way to make a life."(3)

Kira is gifted with her hands and can figure out how to make useful items.  Her mother had taught her how weave through woven fabric and to use colorful threads to make a pattern.

"Kira had always had a clever way with her hands."(19)

Kira is courageous.  After Jo, the little singer's parents had died, she went to visit Jamison to find out about the child.  Kira learned that she was locked up at Jamison's.  She decides to help the child and tells her to wait that she would come back for her. (page 136)