Harper Lee – Shannon in Kansas City

Harper-Lee-Feature-1180There are many types of people that I admire.  I admire 90s super models, professional athletes, artists, fashion designers and domestic goddesses.  But I admire writers more than anyone else.  Writers work with their mind and the writing instrument of their choice and that is all.  They have the ability to use the resource of their mind to break your heart, inspire your imagination or sharpen your intellect.  One of my favorite authors was Harper Lee who died last weekend.

I read “To Kill a Mockingbird” in my tenth grade English Literature class.  I absolutely loved it.  Harper Lee created a small southern town that was rich with character.  The detailed characters made the town feel real and e minor characters of the book captured my imagination.

“To Kill a Mockingbird” could have become an entire series of books.  I always wanted to know more about the Scout’s neighbor that lived down the street; not Boo but the older lady in the neighborhood.  I was also curious about the man that had the appearance of a bachelor but had a relationship and family with a Black woman.  He simply stated that that was his preference.  I reread the book a few years ago in my women’s literature class while I was studying for my MLA.  It was just as good as I remembered.

I also admired the way that Harper Lee made a significant mark on the world of literature but she lived a quiet life out of the spot light.  I’ve never seen her on television or heard her voice.  But I felt heart ache when I heard of her passing.  Until recent years “To Kill a Mockingbird” was her only credit.  She said that she only had one story inside of her.  I admire an artist that is motivated by inspiration as opposed to money and fame.

Writers are my heroes; far more than the beautiful Naomi Campbell and Linda Evangelista whom I love dearly.  The talent of a writer impresses me more than that of Megatron or Cam Newton.  The gifts of models and athletes are physical.  Physical talents can be awe inspiring but athletes, dancers and models are bound by time and the limits of the human body.

Writers have gifted minds and our minds are limitless.  They create entire worlds from their imagination.  They are architects that build palaces with words.  Authors are painters that make art on the canvas of our minds with sentences.  They make time travel possible and give us a passport to anywhere on the globe.  Harper Lee was one of the all time greats.  Hats off to her.


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