Indigo By Hitchcock

People are born with passion. The irony is that most people spend all their
lives searching for that passion without looking inside that soul to the heart
of the passion. The trick to discovering that passion is to find what makes us
happy. For Indigo the main character of Sassafras, Cypress and Indigo by her
passion lies in the music she creates from her soul while using her violin as
her tool. From a modern literary criticism standpoint this passion is seen
through her characterization and the symbolic use of the violin. However in
peeling back the layers and focusing on this story from a Post – Modern
standpoint the reader uncovers deeper issues. There is a sense of discontinuity
in the linear structure that leads to a discovery about the cultural issues in
this story. Indigo challenges the boundaries of her age and a society that
struggles to find a place for her and her soul. That is going under the
assumption that there is a place. "Indigo did not tell her mother about Mr.

Lucas being so evil, nor did she mention that her new fiddle could
talk."(Norton 43) With in the first few lines of the story Indigo’s violin
begins its transformation from merely and instrument to an extension of her
soul. Symbolically Indigo’s violin is representative of her soul. With her
violin Indigo pursues the passions of her soul as she struggles to find her
place somewhere between childhood and womanhood. Indigo’s mother begs her not
to play the violin anymore at night because the neighbors complained about the
awful noise. She forces Indigo to take lessons or go somewhere else to play. By
rejection her violin her mother rejects the heart and soul of Indigo. Only when
she flees to Sister Marie Louise’s shed is she able to play her music and bare
her soul to the world. The violin takes on the presence of sin in her life as
her mother forbids her to play. It is the forbidden fruit that Indigo longs to
taste. Indigo’s character constantly revolves through the turmoil of a young
adolescent on the brink of woman hood. "Then she would blush, hurriedly out
the fiddle back into the case, the Colored and Romance having got the best of
her."(Norton 45) Indigo is not ready to take that final step into womanhood
but she is brave enough to sample. Placing a label on the character of

Indigo’s out her into the category of a round character. Everything that she
experiences affects her both on the inside and the outside. IN fact much of

Indigo’s growth as a character is internalized and seen through the way she
plays the violin. Faced with the decision to learn how to play the violin by
record or quit playing for the people Indigo sets aside her passions and learns
ordinary music. Ironically, when this happens people stop coming by to listen
and the story begins to fall apart. Thematically this story center around a girl
who needs to find her passion and the steps that she must take to find them.

Indigo needs to find her identity and the easiest way to do so is to explore her
thoughts and feelings through her violin music. Through the development of her
character Indigo is forced to make decisions that affect the outcome of her
music and ultimately her life. The story ends in a very somber tome with a
funeral sequence. Indigo realized that the time had come to say good0-bye to her
childhood and the dolls she played with. She dressed in white and her mother in
black as one by one she carried her companions to the attic for a proper burial.

Her dolls were her last connection with childhood and after her experiences in
the underground she felt it was time to lay them to rest. Indigo’s act of
burying these dolls before they reached womanhood with her shows her attempt at
sheltering them form growing up. "Mama I couldn’t bear for them to grow
up," Indigo said in the final scene of the story. Indigo knew that she faced
challenges that would her to heartache in the adult world and by burying her
dolls maybe that was one small way of sheltering a small part of herself. She
already experienced a little bit of the heartache to come when she fled the
underground because of her music. Imagine for me a concert hall filled with
people all with hopes of attending a beautiful violin concert. The violinist
walks out onto the stage and