This is a passage from the book, the onion girl by charles de lint. I picked this up in a library over 15 years ago on a whim from the new book section, I loved it on the first read through. I identified with the main characters,Jilly, Pinky and Raylene, in a deep way that stuck with me. When I returned the book I didn’t think of writing down the name so, when I tried to find it again I couldn’t. It took me five years, until I went on a trip to one of the biggest bookstores in oregon with a couple of new friends. ONe of them had an author they loved that they wanted to show me on a whim, and while looking at this authors books I found the one I had been looking for. Funny how those things go isn’t it?
Well, this passage is one of my favorites, though the whole book is full of them.
“I remember afore we went to sleep last night,
Pinky turned to me where were lying in our beds and asked,‘How come you want to kill your sister but not your brother? He’s the one was puttin’ it to you when you was a little girl.’
‘She knew better,’ I said ‘She had to understand what she was doing. Del-well, he’s evil, all right, and dumb as a fencepost. But I reckon he just didn’t know no better.’
‘And that makes it right, what he done?’
’ ‘Course it don’t make it right. It’s just…’
I don’t know how to explain.
‘Anyway, who says I want to kill my sister?’
‘I thought you did.’
I shook my head. ‘I just want to put her down. I want her to know what she done and to feel my hurting. And I don’t want to be sharing no dreamlands with her.’
I think about that as I sit here on the edge of the road looking at the trailer park.I guess I still feel that way about my sister. But I can’t explain my feelings about Del. I know I don’t even come close to liking him. I’m maybe even a-scared of him a little-somewhere in the back of who I am now where the little girl I used to be is still living.I sure wouldn’t mourn his dying none. But where I want to hurt Jillian May, I can’t even muster up much of anything for Del ‘cept maybe a kind of pity.
I guess it’d be different if I thought he was still playing his old games. If there was some little girl here in the park he was doing it to, like he done it to me. Maybe that’s why I’m here. Just making sure of that. But it don’t feel like it’s why I come. And its not likely I’m gonna catch him up to no good just by sitting here watching his trailer. For one thing, this pink Caddy ain’t really inconspicuous, parked her the way it is.
I remember on one of them talk shows I used to watch how they was always going on about forgiveness, how you needed to forgive the one that hurt you so you can get on with you own living, but that ain’t on my repertoire neither.”
pp352-353. The Onion Girl, Charles De Lint