Bless Me, Ultima

Pdf fan dd71f526917d6085d66d045bd94fb5b55d02a108dd45d836cbdd4abe2d4c043d Tap here to download this LitChart! (PDF)

Antonio Juan Márez Character Analysis

The protagonist and narrator of the novel, a young Chicano boy growing up in Guadalupe, New Mexico. Antonio (or Tony) has a great desire for knowledge and wrestles with many difficult questions about life and religion. The novel follows his experiences facing tribulations and growing up, and also his relationship with Ultima. Tony sees death, has religious experiences, goes to school, and must choose between the conflicting dreams of his parents. The story is essentially Antonio building his own identity from life experiences, the cultures he comes from, and the beliefs he is exposed to.

Antonio Juan Márez Quotes in Bless Me, Ultima

The Bless Me, Ultima quotes below are all either spoken by Antonio Juan Márez or refer to Antonio Juan Márez. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Growing Up Theme Icon
).
Chapter 1 (Uno) Quotes

Ultima came to stay with us the summer I was almost seven. When she came the beauty of the llano unfolded before my eyes, and the gurgling waters of the river sang to the hum of the turning earth. The magical time of childhood stood still, and the pulse of the living earth pressed its mystery into my living blood.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima
Chapter 3 (Tres) Quotes

Why two people as opposite as my father and my mother had married I do not know. Their blood and their ways had kept them at odds, and yet for all this, we were happy.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Gabriel Márez, María Luna Márez

"Ay, how true," my mother said and clutched me tightly, "and what a sin it is for a boy to grow into a man--"
It was a sin to grow up and be a man.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), María Luna Márez (speaker)

"But I want to know, there are so many things I want to know," I insisted.
"A curandera cannot give away her secrets," she said, "but if a person really wants to know, then he will listen and see and be patient. Knowledge comes slowly--"

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima (speaker)
Chapter 4 (Cuatro) Quotes

God was not always forgiving. He made laws to follow and if you broke them you were punished. The Virgin always forgave.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker)
Chapter 6 (Seis) Quotes

"Ay! My man of learning!" my mother smiled when I entered the kitchen. She swept me in her arms and before I knew it she was crying on my shoulder. "My baby will be gone today," she sobbed.
"He will be all right," Ultima said. "The sons must leave the sides of their mothers," she said almost sternly and pulled my mother gently.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima (speaker), María Luna Márez (speaker)

I yearned for my mother, and at the same time I understood that she had sent me to this place where I was an outcast. I had tried hard to learn and they had laughed at me; I had opened my lunch to eat and again they had laughed and pointed at me. The pain and sadness seemed to spread to my soul, and I felt for the first time what the grown-ups call, la tristesa de la vida.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), María Luna Márez
Chapter 8 (Ocho) Quotes

"And, they still have Tony," Gene said and looked at me. "Tony will be her priest," he laughed.
"Tony will be her farmer," León added.
"And her dream will be complete and we will be free!" Gene shouted.

Related Characters: Eugene Márez (speaker), León Márez (speaker), Antonio Juan Márez, María Luna Márez
Chapter 9 (Nueve) Quotes

You are innocent until you understand, the priest of the church said, and you will understand good and evil when the communion is placed in your mouth and God fills your body.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker)

"The golden carp," I said to myself, "a new god?" I could not believe this strange story, and yet I could not disbelieve Samuel. "Is the golden carp still here?"
"Yes," Samuel answered. His voice was strong with faith. It made me shiver, not because it was cold but because the roots of everything I had ever believed in seemed shaken. If the golden carp was a god, who was the man on the cross? The Virgin? Was my mother praying to the wrong God?

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Samuel (speaker)
Chapter 10 (Diez) Quotes

The power of the doctors and the power of the church had failed to cure my uncle. Now everyone depended on Ultima's magic. Was it possible that there was more power in Ultima's magic than in the priest?

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima
Chapter 11 (Once) Quotes

"The golden carp," I whispered in awe. I could not have been more entranced if I had seen the Virgin, or God Himself… I felt my body trembling as I saw the bright golden form disappear. I knew I had witnessed a miraculous thing, the appearance of a pagan god… And I thought, the power of God failed where Ultima's worked; and then a sudden illumination of beauty and understanding flashed through my mind. This is what I had expected God to do at my first holy communion!

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima

"But it's not fair to those who don't sin!" I countered.
"Tony," Cico said softly, "all men sin."
I had no answer to that. My own mother had said that losing your innocence and becoming a man was learning to sin. I felt weak and powerless in the knowledge of the impending doom.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Cico (speaker), María Luna Márez

"Antonio," she said calmly and placed her hand on my shoulder, "I cannot tell you what to believe. Your father and your mother can tell you, because you are their blood, but I cannot. As you grow into manhood you must find your own truths -- "

Related Characters: Ultima (speaker), Antonio Juan Márez, Gabriel Márez, María Luna Márez
Chapter 12 (Doce) Quotes

Ultima and I continued to search for plants and roots in the hills. I felt more attached to Ultima than to my own mother. Ultima told me the stories and legends of my ancestors. From her I learned the glory and tragedy of the history of my people, and I came to understand how that history stirred in my blood.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima, María Luna Márez
Chapter 13 (Trece) Quotes

We drove past Rosie's house and I thought about the sins of the town and how the golden carp would punish the sinners. He would drown them in clear, blue water. Then we passed the church and I thought about God's punishment for sinners. He casts them in the burning pit of hell where they burn for eternity… Drowning or burning, the punishment was all the same. The soul was lost, unsafe, unsure, suffering – why couldn't there be a god who would never punish his people, a god who would be forgiving all of the time? Perhaps the Virgin Mary was such a god?

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Rosie
Chapter 14 (Catorce) Quotes

And I remembered my dream. Andrew had said that he would not enter the house of the naked women until I had lost my innocence. Had I already lost my innocence? How? I had seen Lupito murdered… I had seen Ultima's cure… I had seen the men come to hang her… I had seen the awful fight just now… I had seen and reveled in the beauty of the golden carp!

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima, Andrew Márez, Lupito

You foolish boy, God roared, don't you see you are caught in your own trap! You would have a God who forgives all, but when it comes to your personal whims you seek punishment for your vengeance. You would have my mother rule my heavens, you would send all sinners to her for forgiveness, but you would also have her taint her hands with the blood of vengeance
Vengeance is Mine! He shouted, not even your golden carp would give up that power as a god!

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker)
Chapter 16 (Dieciseis) Quotes

I could not understand why Narciso, who did good in trying to help Ultima, had lost his life; and why Tenorio, who was evil and had taken a life, was free and unpunished. It didn't seem fair. I thought a great deal about God and why he let such things happen.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima, Tenorio Trementina, Narciso
Chapter 17 (Diecisiete) Quotes

There seemed to be so many pitfalls in the questions we asked. I wanted answers to the questions, but would the knowledge of the answers make me share in the original sin of Adam and Eve?
"And if we didn't have any knowledge?" I asked.
"Then we would be like the dumb animals of the fields," Florence replied.
Animals, I thought. Were the fish of the golden carp happier than we were? Was the golden carp a better God?

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Florence (speaker)
Chapter 18 (Dieciocho) Quotes

"For your penance say a rosary to the Virgin," I said weakly. I didn't feel good. The weight of the jackets was making me sweat, and the revelation of Horse's confession and the way the kids were acting was making me sick. I wondered how the priest could shoulder the burden of all the sins he heard.
… the weight of the sins will sink the town into the lake of the golden carp…

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker)
Chapter 19 (Diecinueve) Quotes

I closed my eyes and concentrated. I had just swallowed Him, He must be in there! For a moment, on the altar railing, I thought I had felt His warmth, but then everything moved so fast. There wasn't time just to sit and discover Him, like I could do when I sat on the creek bank and watched the golden carp swim in the sun-filtered waters.
God! Why did Lupito die?
Why do you allow the evil of the Trementinas?
Why did you allow Narciso to be murdered when he was doing good?
Why do you punish Florence? Why doesn't he believe?
Will the golden carp rule - ?
A thousand questions pushed through my mind, but the Voice within me did not answer.

Chapter 20 (Veinte) Quotes

"Ah, there is no freedom like the freedom of the llano!" my father said and breathed in the fresh, clean air.
"And there is no beauty like this earth," Ultima said. They looked at each other and smiled, and I realized that from these two people I had learned to love the magical beauty of the wide, free earth.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima (speaker), Gabriel Márez (speaker)
Chapter 21 (Veintiuno) Quotes

"You have to choose, Tony," Cico said, "you have to choose between the god of the church, or the beauty that is here and now --"

Related Characters: Cico (speaker), Antonio Juan Márez

The lonely river was a sad place to be when one is a small boy who has just seen a friend die.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker)
Chapter 22 (Veintidos) Quotes

"Ay, every generation, every man is a part of his past. He cannot escape it, but he may reform the old materials, make something new --"
"Take the llano and the river valley, the moon and the sea, God and the golden carp – and make something new," I said to myself. That is what Ultima meant by building strength from life. "Papá," I asked, "can a new religion be made?"

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Gabriel Márez (speaker), Ultima

And that is what Ultima tried to teach me, that the tragic consequences of life can be overcome by the magical strength that resides in the human heart.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima

Would I ever race like a kid again, a wild cabrito rattling the pebbles on the goat path; and would I ever wrestle the crazy Horse and wild Bones again? And what dream would form to guide my life as a man?

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Horse, Bones

The thundering report of the rifle followed the flash of fire. That shot destroyed the quiet, moonlit peace of the hill, and it shattered my childhood into a thousand fragments that long ago stopped falling and are now dusty relics gathered in distant memories.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker)

"Take them to their room," I said to my mother. It was the first time I had ever spoken to my mother as a man; she nodded and obeyed.

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), María Luna Márez

"Bless me, Ultima --"
Her hand touched my forehead and her last words were, "I bless you in the name of all that is good and strong and beautiful, Antonio. Always have the strength to live. Love life, and if despair enters your heart, look for me in the evening when the wind is gentle and the owls sing in the hills. I shall be with you --"

Related Characters: Antonio Juan Márez (speaker), Ultima (speaker)
Get the entire Bless Me, Ultima LitChart as a printable PDF.
Bless me ultima.pdf.medium

Antonio Juan Márez Character Timeline in Bless Me, Ultima

The timeline below shows where the character Antonio Juan Márez appears in Bless Me, Ultima. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1 (Uno)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio Márez remembers when he was six years old and Ultima came to live with his... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...how it is wrong for her to be alone on the llano at her age. Antonio has heard that she is a curandera, a magic healing woman with knowledge of herbs... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio starts to fall asleep and he prays to the Virgin Mary. María wants him to... (full context)
Antonio wakes up and thinks apprehensively about leaving his mother and going to school for the... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio goes to his friend Jasón's house, one of only three on their side of the... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio leaves and goes to work in the garden. The land of the llano is too... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Ultima steps from the truck and the children greet her formally, but when Antonio takes her hand he feels a sudden whirlwind and a rush of the power of... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Ultima enters the house and Antonio smells the fragrance of many herbs surrounding her. An owl arrives that night and starts... (full context)
Chapter 2 (Dos)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
...cries when he thinks of how the war and the town have ruined his ambitions. Antonio walks through the llano with Ultima and learns about the beauty of the earth, and... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
...and they get their rifles and leave. María tries to lock the children in but Antonio slips out and follows the men. (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Men are gathered on the bridge and Antonio hides in some brush. He sees Lupito crouching at the edge of the river with... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...he is shooting at them, and they shoot together and kill him. Lupito looks at Antonio as he dies, and cries out for his blessing. (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio runs away through sharp branches that cut him, repeating the Acts of Contrition – the... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio enters the house and Ultima greets him gives him some medicine to drink. She tries... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...want to gather around Gabriel and go west to build a castle in the hills. Antonio wants to go too, but they mock him for being too young and submitting to... (full context)
Chapter 3 (Tres)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio wakes up to the white sun and finds that Ultima's potion has healed his cuts.... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...a priest, and she hopes that the people will turn back to the earth and Antonio will be their priest once more. Antonio wonders how such contradictory people got married, but... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
They get ready for church and Ultima asks how Antonio is doing. María scolds him for not greeting Ultima formally enough, but Ultima says that... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio asks Ultima about his father's soul and how he can take communion if he killed... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio goes around the side of the church to wait with some older boys from town.... (full context)
Chapter 4 (Cuatro)
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Ultima and Antonio gather herbs in the llano together every morning, and Ultima teaches him about the spirits... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
One day they sit by the river and eat prickly pears. Antonio asks about his family and Ultima explains how the Márez are loud and wild like... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...with the harvest. After dinner they pray to the statue of the Virgin of Guadalupe, Antonio's favorite saint. He imagines that she is a real person who is quiet and forgiving,... (full context)
Chapter 5 (Cinco)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio's favorite uncle Pedro arrives to take them to El Puerto, the home of the Lunas.... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio's grandfather is named Prudencio. María greets him excitedly and then Ultima hugs him like an... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
They work and cook and tell stories, and Antonio overhears his mother talking to her brother Juan about him. They hope he will choose... (full context)
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio thinks about the brujas dancing with the devil across the river, but then he hears... (full context)
Chapter 6 (Seis)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
It is the first day of school that Antonio has been dreading. As they get ready, his father complains that he and María should... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio thinks of what Jasón told him about the magic in written letters, and how Ultima... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...go and María asks Ultima to bless the children. When she places her hand on Antonio's head he again feels a whirlwind, and thinks about the dust devils of the llano,... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio starts walking and is comforted by the daytime singing of Ultima's owl. As he crosses... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio finds his teacher, Miss Maestas, and admits he can't speak English. He sits in the... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio leaves the room and starts to cry. He wants to go home but he knows... (full context)
Chapter 7 (Siete)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio dreams of his brothers as giants, and they tell him about the wide world they... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
...both California and the war. The house feels complete with everyone home. Meanwhile at school Antonio keeps learning his letters, and Miss Maestas sends a note home about his good progress,... (full context)
Chapter 8 (Ocho)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Spring comes, and with it the restless blood awakens in Antonio's brothers. They are almost never around, and they ignore Gabriel's talk of California. The spend... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
The brothers decide to leave Antonio to be the farmer-priest for his mother, and then grow excited and wild at the... (full context)
Chapter 9 (Nueve)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio dreams about his brothers and Rosie's house of sin. Eugene and León enter, but Andrew... (full context)
...day, but Andrew stays to finish school, and he gets a job at a market. Antonio asks if he wants to become a farmer or a priest, but Andrew says it... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Antonio and Andrew race across the bridge but the Vitamin Kid beats them both. The Kid... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio learns to read and write that year, and the principal tells him that is skipping... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
They catch some catfish and Samuel asks Antonio if he has ever fished for carp. Antonio says no, because it is bad luck,... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...of them. He became a huge golden carp, and he still lives in the river. Antonio is shaken by Samuel's faith in the golden carp, and wonders if he himself has... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio gets home late and his mother is angry, but soon overjoyed that he has skipped... (full context)
Chapter 10 (Diez)
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio tries to learn more about the golden carp but Samuel is gone for the summer.... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Ultima gathers her herbs and declares her readiness, looking small but dignified. She says Antonio must go with her. He is "a Juan" (his middle name) and has strong Luna... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...says she must speak to Tenorio first, and no one may come with her except Antonio. (full context)
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...dust storm and Tenorio tries to run them over with his horse, but Ultima pulls Antonio aside just in time. The mourning women hurry away from the Luna house and Ultima... (full context)
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio wonders if Ultima can succeed where the Church failed. Ultima bathes Lucas and prepares an... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Coyotes howl outside the house but than Ultima's owl appears and attacks them. Antonio slips into a dream state and Ultima feeds Lucas more medicine. Antonio feels he is... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio wakes up and Ultima says they have defeated the death spirit, but the evil spirit... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
When he wakes up Ultima feeds Antonio more atole, and says Lucas has been almost healed. Antonio vomits and then feels better.... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...save her life one day. People whisper about her as she leaves, but one of Antonio's aunts defends her from the word "bruja." Ultima makes Pedro drive her to the grove... (full context)
Chapter 11 (Once)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Some time later Antonio is fishing in the river, and he hears someone calling his name. Cico appears and... (full context)
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...carp except him and Samuel, and it is only a feeling that made them trust Antonio. The gang of town boys appears and makes fun of Ultima, and Horse puts Antonio... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
They walk to a place Antonio has never been before, to a secluded pond on a clear creek called El Rito.... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Cico points and then salutes, and the golden carp appears. It is bigger than Antonio and covered in golden scales. Antonio feels like he is beholding the Virgin or God,... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...only a game between him and the fish. They wait and the golden carp returns. Antonio worries that a fisherman will catch and kill the carp, but Cico says only a... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio is amazed at all the strange and magical things he has learned. Cico tells the... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio is distressed by this. It seems unfair to him, but Cico says that everyone knows... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Antonio asks Ultima about the golden carp, and she smiles and says she cannot tell him... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
That night Antonio dreams of all the dead people in the waters of the golden carp. His parents... (full context)
Chapter 12 (Doce)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Antonio spends the summer thinking of the golden carp and Ultima's cure of Lucas. Gabriel starts... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
One night Antonio asks about the three dolls on Ultima's shelf, especially one of them that seems twisted... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...a witch. Tenorio claims to have found Ultima's bag of herbs under his daughter's bed. Antonio steps forward and reveals that he has the scapular around his neck. (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...guns arrive at the house and call for Gabriel to give up Ultima. Gabriel and Antonio step outside and face the mob. Gabriel asks who speaks but everyone is ashamed to... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...pull him away and go. As the family recovers from the terror of the ordeal, Antonio notices that the crossed needles have fallen from the door, and he never discovers if... (full context)
Chapter 13 (Trece)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...into the church for mass because she was a bruja. They drive through Guadalupe and Antonio thinks about the golden carp's punishment of water and God's punishment of fire. He wonders... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
As they drive Antonio asks his uncle Pedro why the Lunas did not warn them about Tenorio coming from... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...Trementinas and the devilish "Black Mass" they will perform over the dead daughter. That night Antonio dreams of the same Black Mass, but then in the coffin he sees Ultima. The... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...wailing, and Tenorio gives Ultima the evil eye. When the work for harvest is completed Antonio's family prepares to return to Guadalupe, but as they depart Juan Luna asks that Antonio... (full context)
Chapter 14 (Catorce)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
The first day of school arrives. As Antonio and Andrew walk to school, Andrew says that when he came back from the war... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
The other town boys are rowdy as usual, and make fun of Antonio's brother for "whoring," which Antonio doesn't understand. One of the boys, Ernie, calls Ultima a... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...a Christmas play, but on the day of the play there is a huge blizzard. Antonio decides to go to school while his sisters stay home, and Andrew comes along to... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...and quickly degenerates into a huge farce. Abel starts peeing on the stage, Horse punches Antonio (who is playing Joseph), and the head of the baby Jesus doll falls off. It... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
The town is empty and eerie as he walks, and Antonio comes upon Narciso and Tenorio fighting savagely and cursing each other outside a bar. Finally... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Narciso is distressed and intends to go warn Ultima that she is in danger. Antonio is also worried, and he follows Narciso. Narciso looks for Andrew first, and turns towards... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Rosie comes out and Antonio smells perfume and hears laughter from inside. She mocks Narciso but then Andrew emerges from... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
...have corrupted Andrew and that now he must travel on to the stormy llano alone. Antonio feels feverish but keeps following after Narciso. (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
As he walks Antonio worries that he is no longer innocent, and his communion is still far away, and... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio is in shock, but he goes to Narciso. The juniper trees make a sort of... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio comes home with blood on his hands and tells what happened. His parents are in... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
In his dreams Antonio asks God to forgive Andrew, but God refuses. God says he will forgive Narciso, but... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...in a river of Narciso and Lupito's blood, and then demand Ultima's blood as well. Antonio's brothers appears and ask him to bless and forgive them. Then the Trementina sisters cut... (full context)
Chapter 15 (Quince)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
...cares much about Narciso's death, as he was the town drunkard, and there is only Antonio's word to accuse Tenorio so the coroner declares it an accident. Antonio has pneumonia and... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
María arranges that Antonio will start his catechism in the spring, and then take communion and have knowledge of... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
...day all three brothers leave – Andrew goes too and drops out of high school. Antonio wonders if his brothers will always be lost to him. (full context)
Chapter 16 (Dieciseis)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio returns to school after Christmas vacation ends, but he feels he has changed and loses... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
One day on the way home from school Antonio sees Tenorio under the juniper tree where he killed Narciso. Tenorio sees Antonio and curses... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
When Antonio gets home and tells Ultima what happened, she makes sure Tenorio didn't hurt Antonio in... (full context)
Chapter 17 (Diecisiete)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio and the other children his age begin their catechism lessons with Father Byrnes that March.... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
When Antonio reports these rumors of the atomic bomb to Gabriel, he laughs and says the dust... (full context)
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
On the day before catechism, Florence asks Antonio difficult questions about sin and fairness. When the other boys arrive, they ask why Florence... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...a kinder place, and the only sin of Adam and Eve was wanting more knowledge. Antonio's faith is shaken, and he proposes that maybe God comes in cycles, and maybe when... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio and Florence are late to catechism class and Father Byrnes warns Antonio about talking to... (full context)
Chapter 18 (Dieciocho)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
It is Ash Wednesday, and Antonio thinks of his body's mortality and his soul's immortality. He finds school boring compared to... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...day. The priest prays near them and his incense is suffocating. Horse passes out onto Antonio. (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
As the boys wait to give their first confession they start to make fun of Antonio for wanting to be a priest. They suddenly grow cruel and hit him and drape... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...sinned against him by making life so unfair. The other kids are shocked and ask Antonio to give him a terrible penance, and say they will even stone or kill him... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio realizes what he must do, and he declares no penance for Florence, and that he... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio waits outside the booth, praying and thinking of his sins in the darkness of the... (full context)
Chapter 19 (Diecinueve)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
It is Easter Sunday and Antonio is excited about his first communion. The other kids joke about eating God but Antonio... (full context)
Chapter 20 (Veinte)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
On the last day of school Antonio is still unsatisfied with communion and he still struggles to navigate between the different dreams... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio spends more time with Ultima and worries that Tenorio is still after her. Téllez, one... (full context)
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...to go banish the spirits if Gabriel will accept the responsibility for tampering with fate. Antonio comes too. (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...with juniper branches, and places three bundles onto it. They light it on fire and Antonio wonders if the bundles are the Indian spirits. Gabriel says that this is the way... (full context)
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
That night, back in his bed at home, Antonio dreams of his brothers, and they beg him for relief from their restless Márez blood.... (full context)
Chapter 21 (Veintiuno)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
It gets warmer and Antonio and Cico go to see the golden carp again. Antonio is still unsure about God,... (full context)
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
The golden carp appears and Antonio feels peaceful and happy at the sight of it. He wonders what god he will... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
...dive in when Florence's dead body floats to the surface. They pull him out, horrified. Antonio considers praying the Act of Contrition, but he knows Florence never believed so it would... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
...the other boys lie and say that they tried to stop Florence from swimming there. Antonio is in shock, and he watches two hawks circling in the distance. Suddenly he starts... (full context)
Chapter 22 (Veintidos)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
That night Antonio dreams of three people. At first he thinks that they are his brothers, but actually... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio wakes from the nightmare and Ultima gives him a potion. She says he has seen... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Gabriel and Antonio talk on the drive to El Puerto. Gabriel says it is good for Antonio to... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio asks Gabriel about evil, to which Gabriel responds that most evil is just things people... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Antonio has a good month working with his uncles and his nightmares do not bother him... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
As Pedro is speaking to Antonio, Juan approaches with the news that Tenorio's second daughter has died, and that Tenorio is... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio is walking Tenorio suddenly rides up, cursing, and tries to run him over with his... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio starts to run the ten miles to Guadalupe, and he thinks of Narciso's last rush... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio runs and thinks about the moments of beauty and grief he has experienced, and wonders... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
...up triumphantly, howling that he has had his revenge. Then he aims his gun at Antonio again, but Pedro shoots him in the stomach and he falls, dead. (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Antonio sees the owl is dead and looks frantically for Ultima. The others don't understand what... (full context)
Punishment and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio enters Ultima's room and sees she is dying. He pleads with her to live, but... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Knowledge Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
Antonio kneels and requests a blessing. Ultima asks that he have "the strength to live," and... (full context)
Growing Up Theme Icon
Language and Culture Theme Icon
Christianity vs. the Supernatural Theme Icon
As he buries the owl, Antonio looks at the moonlit town and thinks about building his own, new dream out of... (full context)