Glass, perfume, & death.

Page 61-62. Breakfast at Tiffany’s by: Truman Capote

In this extract the most tragic thing for Holly occurs. The person she loves the most, her little brother, has been killed at war. She has just been informed & her reaction isn’t more than we could expect.

I am not sure if I am looking too much into it anymore. However, the insistence of emphasising on Holly’s fashionable dark glasses throughout the novel makes me think that there is something more that Capote wants to say; about the way she sees the world. These glasses maintain her in a protected distance while simultaneously aiding her sight.

When she hears the news about Fred’s death, she wrecks her apartment, anything she can get ahold of, & her glasses get dragged into the mess. They are entirely broken, from lens to frame. Along with the perfume bottles, which are mentioned right before her glasses. They both are things she valued. & both things she used regularly. They helped create this character who cares about the details that represent her in the midst of her fast-paced life. Perfume reflects a lot about a person. However, when these broken bottles are smashed in her bedroom, the smell makes the narrator gag. Making this superficial product seem meaningless.

There seems to be a description of costumes being burned. Like we can finally see, for the first time, a raw image of Holly & her true feelings. For the first time, she loses complete control. Not caring about what anybody thinks anymore. The grief is too great. & it is not difficult for us to empathise with this little girl who has tragically lost his estranged little brother. The little brother she thinks about and worries of daily. The one she was trying to be better for, in order to help. Gone.

The doctor serves the purpose of a sort of mediator & paternal figure that she so longs for. Telling her exactly what she needs. Rest. Unlike José, the man lucky enough to be deserving of her time, who can’t manage to comprehend her pain. & again, the narrator gives the impression of an outsider. We wish so badly for them to end up together (despite insinuated homosexual preferences) simply because he understands.

She whimpers like an exhausted, fretful child.” Dreams of a lonely girl, missing somebody she just lost.

“”Everything hurts. Where are my glasses?” But she didn’t need them. Her eyes were closing of their own accord.”

Capote could quite literally be describing a blind Holly without these dark shades, but he could also be reflecting upon a new perspective that she’ll have to work hard on developing. Like the last time she fabricated this new persona, after she ran away, there comes catharsis. & we are left wondering, what will come next?

Stay curious,

B.

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