Study Guide

Lucy: A Novel Chapter 2: Mariah

By Jamaica Kincaid

Chapter 2: Mariah

  • Spring forward: it's now March.
  • Lucy recalls a day earlier in the month when Mariah was totally psyched to introduce Lucy to Spring with all of its blooming daffodils.
  • Daffodils?! It turns out that Lucy hates daffodils. Wait, that's putting it mildly. She absolutely despises them. See, she has this traumatic memory of having to memorize and recite a poem about daffodils when she was in school, which she tells Mariah all about.
  • Attention, please: we interrupt this scintillating Plot Summary to tell you that some bookish readers have speculated that the trauma-inducing poem Lucy had to recite is William Wordsworth's "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud." (Lucy herself never specifies the title.) Even if you're not as freaked out by daffodils as Lucy is, you may be freaked out by the rapping reindeer in this rendition of the poem.
  • Talk about keeping your family and friends close: Lucy tells us that she carries letters from home inside her bra wherever she goes.
  • We learn about Lucy's relationship with her mother and a former schoolmate who was possessed by the Devil. Yikes!
  • And we learn a whole lot more about Mariah and Lucy's impressions of her.
  • Lucy tells us about the day that the weather was finally good enough for the family to take the train to the lake house, something Mariah had been super excited to do.
  • Before they take off, Mariah has a surprise for Lucy. She blindfolds her and takes her to a garden. She takes the blindfold off and daffodils are everywhere.
  • Is this some twisted joke? Has Mariah forgotten how freaked out daffodils make Lucy?
  • Lucy lashes out at Mariah. They walk home "in silence."
  • Mariah, Lucy, and the kids leave for the lake house (Lewis stays behind). They ride the train, but Lucy doesn't find it to be anywhere as exciting as it looks in the movies.
  • Whew, it's such a long journey that they don't even arrive until the next morning.
  • When they get off the train, they're met by a dude, Gus, who Mariah has known since she was little.
  • Gus drives everybody to the house where Mariah grew up. Lucy admits that the house is pretty rad, but she doesn't want Mariah to think she's too excited about it. She knows that Mariah wants her to be excited about it, but Lucy is not going to please her because that's how she rolls.
  • Mariah catches a fish in the lake near the house, which reminds Lucy of an encounter she had with her own mother. She tells Mariah about the encounter and Mariah seems confused.
  • Mariah tells Lucy that the reason she's so awesome at hunting and fishing is that she has Indian blood inside of her.
  • Huh? Lucy is skeptical of her claim and she wonders why Mariah felt the need to tell her this info.
  • Mariah tries to smooth things over by giving Lucy a hug, but Lucy isn't having it. Yet another awkward moment ensues.

This is a premium product

Tired of ads?

Join today and never see them again.

Please Wait...