| Quote #1
My struggles with depression. The times I thought about running away. The times I thought about killing myself. (Introduction.29)
Abe is the saddest character in the book, but he's not the only one. The narrator and Abe share a few qualities, so it's not so surprising that they share occasional depression and suicidal thoughts. But why connect the narrator to Abe in this way? Does it shed any light on Abe's sadness?
| Quote #2
The grieving boy didn't sleep a wink that night. "I could think only of the injustice I had done another living thing, and the fear I had seen in its eyes as the promise of life slipped away." (1.10)
This isn't a major depression on Abe's part, but killing a turkey clearly bums Abe out. (Conversely, it makes the rest of his family well-fed.) It's curious that this sadness is connected to the turkey's mortality, which is not usually how we think about turkeys. We usually think of them between slices of bread. Too soon?
| Quote #3
However, I will never forget my mother and father's torment. To describe it would be an exercise in futility. It is the sort of suffering that cannot be done justice with words. I can say only this—that I suspect it is an anguish from which one never recovers. A walking death. (1.30)
Abe's talking about the depression his parents feel after losing their youngest kiddo. But it's a nice dose of foreshadowing, too. Abe suspects that it's an anguish from which one never recovers, and later, he'll experience that exact same anguish. He just doesn't know it yet.