roll of thunder hear my cry
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Weather is more than a meteorological phenomena. As the words to Mr. Morrison's song suggest, weather is a sentient entity capable of hearing his cry and empathizing. The dust, rain, and mud emphasize the white degradation of the black school children, and the physical barrier posed by walking to school in the rain echo the barriers erected to the black children's education by the school board. The climax of the book occurs simultaneously with a massive thunder storm, and the approaching storm cannot be separated from the approaching violence. Ultimately, however, this weather is empathetic. The rain which comes and puts out the fire helps to bring about an end to both the physical and emotional storm. Check out this excerpt from the GradeSaver site!