A Rose for Emily
It was Homer Barron’s remains that lay on the bed in among the rooms of the old Grierson house, found there forty years after his disappearance. The scenarios and events pointed out by the author of the short story “A Rose for Emily” point out to this unavoidable conclusion.
Only a person with an irregular state of mind would suffer a dead male to lie unburied for years, mouldering right inside a space in her home. When a few of the neighbours experienced the foul odor, Miss Emily acted as if nothing was incorrect: the men who had actually surreptitiously entered her yard to spread out lime over the ground saw her sitting inside one of the spaces.
Unknown to them at that time, she was possibly keeping vigil or visiting her enthusiast’s remains. That she would rest with him night after night– evidenced by the “long hair of iron-gray hair” discovered in the indentation in the pillow next to him– bespeaks of her utter loss of sanity, which was not so noticeable in the beginning. That Miss Emily experienced emotional instability– a streak of madness in her– becomes apparent as the story unfolds.
Cloistered in the ancient Grierson estate, Miss Emily is seen as somebody above the average citizen: her expected family tree kept people at bay. She ignored tax notices sent after her father passed away; either she did not comprehend, or she had actually naively thought the old tale that the townspeople were indebted to her family. She is invulnerable and cold, relatively lacking any feeling, as if lost in a world only she learns about.
We find the very first strong evidence of her abnormal mindset when her daddy passes away: she declines for three days to have him buried, telling the mourners he was not dead. “We did not say she was crazy then,” tells the author. Individuals saw her sorrow as evidence of a despairing helplessness, feeling herself so alone, still single, her daddy having actually driven away those boys who had actually earlier proposed to her.
We are told that Miss Emily “had some kin in Alabama; however years ago her dad had actually fallen out with them over the estate of old girl Wyatt, the insane woman …” Here is yet another tip that madness ran in the household.
When she and Homer Barron are seen together, triggering a scandal among the townsfolk, the Baptist minister is sent to speak with her. The minister does not say what transpired throughout their interview however he declines to go back (and speak to her) again. Maybe the minister was surprised by Miss Emily’s haughty demeanor as that she showed when she overcame the town officials who had actually required from her payment of taxes. Or possibly the minister saw something terrible in Emily’s eyes that he refused to talk with her again.
The awareness that the fun-loving, carefree supervisor was not eager on weding her, and the coming of her cousins from Alabama could have been the tipping point– the hair trigger– that triggered Miss Emily’s mind to finally snap: she goes to the druggist to buy poison. She leaves little doubt regarding her intent and frame of mind when she requires “I want some poison … I want the best you have. I don’t care what kind.”
Now, why should a lady of her stature go to the druggist herself to purchase poison for some vermin when he could have just sent out the Negro on such errand? It is possible the existence of her 2 cousins, who “were even more Grierson than Miss Emily had actually ever been” also had some even more strong impact on her, reminding her of her daddy’s sternness that had actually deprived her of suitors and the opportunity to wed.
However why would Miss Emily eliminate Homer when they could have wed or went on with their dalliance, the town’s hostility regardless of? This is a guess: Miss Emily might have believed Homer was not major in their relationship– that she was being utilized for his amusement– and had actually decided to make him stay completely.
But first she needed to offer him a chance, so she buys the silver toilet set with Homer’s initials in it, and males’s clothes including a nightshirt: perfect for a wedding and a honeymoon. When Homer appears after the cousins had actually departed, they have a conflict: she demands to know if he would wed her or was merely taking her for a fool. Evasive and smooth, Homer would have parried off her concerns with caresses, but she is skeptical. So she laces her food with toxin.
Or, she may have prepared the important things right from the start when the people started whispering “Poor Emily” behind her back. She wanted Homer so badly she would have to kill him and not allow anyone to take him away.
To her, it was to be no criminal activity at all. She prepares the room for his resting location (or their “hideaway”), which was “decked and furnished as for a bridal: upon the valance curtains of faded rose color, upon the rose-shaded lights … upon the fragile range of crystal and the man’s toilet things backed with stained silver …” There she slept with him, embracing his cold decomposed body, pretending or imagining him, in her utter insanity, to be alive, as she had actually declined to think her old father dead.
Faulkner, William. “A Rose for Emily”. Fictions. Forth Worth: Harcourt Brace College, 1998.