House on Mango Street

Why does Alicia see mice? What is significant about the fact that the father tells Alicia that she is only imagining the mice? Is this a denial of something else?

Alicia Who Sees Mice

Close your eyes and they'll go away, her father says, or You're just imagining. And anyway, a woman's place is sleeping so she can wake up early with the tortilla star, the one that appears early just in time to rise and catch the hind legs hide behind the sink, beneath the four-clawed tub, under the swollen floorboards nobody fixes, in the corner of your eyes.

Alicia, whose mama died, is sorry there is no one older to rise and make the lunchbox tortillas.

Alicia, who inherited her mama's rolling pin and sleepiness, is young and smart and studies for the first time at the university. Two trains and a bus, because she doesn't want to spend her whole life in a factory or behind a rolling pin. Is a good girl, my friend, studies all night and sees the mice, the ones her father says do not exist. Is afraid of nothing except four-legged fur. And fathers.

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Last updated by jill d #170087
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This is a denial of poverty.... a denial of things to fear. In essence, it's reassurance and encouragement.


House on Mango Street