Last Reviewed on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 477
Welty's 1949 collection of short stories takes places in a fictional town of Mississippi called Morgana. She immerses her characters in the culture and language of the South as she explores their lives, trials, and relationships.
Readers receive rich descriptions of the town and its people, especially in the second story, "June Recital":
Morgana was extra deep in smell this afternoon; the magnolias were open all over the tree at the last corner. They glittered like lights in the dense tree that loomed . . . .
That rainless windless June, the bright air and the town of
Morgana, life itself, sunlit and moonlit, were composed and still and china-like.
Beaded curtains in the doorway stirred and clicked now and then during a lesson...the beads were faintly sweet-smelling and made you think of long strings of wine-balls and tiny candy bottles . . . .
The narrator of the first story entitled "Shower of Gold" is Mrs. Rainey, who provides a flowing dialogue of observation and gossip about the town:
Sure, I can churn and talk. My name is Mrs. Rainey.
Welty's style of writing allows the reader to feel as if one if sitting on the front porch of a small home in this southern town, listening to various characters like Mrs. Rainey. For example, Mrs. Rainey describes a man of her town, Old Plez Morgan:
Old Plez Morgan everyone calls him. Lives down beyond me. The real old kind, that knows everybody since time was. He knows more folks than I do, who they are, and all the fine people.
Here, Mrs. Rainey describes a fall day:
The day had a two-way look, like a day will at change of the year—clouds dark and the gold air still in the road, and the trees lighter than the sky was.
One interesting, complex character named King Mclain appears...
(The entire section contains 477 words.)
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