Melt White Quotes in The Worst Hard Time
The other kids teased him about his skin, which seemed too full of the sun, even in winter. One Sunday, Melt asked visiting relatives how the family came to be. You shush, boy, he was told. Melt kept at it. Finally, an aunt told about the Apache and Cherokee in him. She said he should never tell anybody—keep it inside the family. “It’s a disgrace to be part Indian,” he says. “That’s what she said.”
Keeping the dust out was impossible. Even fresh-cleaned clothes, hanging outside to dry on the line, were at risk [….] Lizzie swept five, six times a day. She had her boys shovel dust in the morning, after it piled up outside the door. Sometimes a big dune blocked the door, and the boys had to crawl out the window to get to it. The dust arrived in mysterious ways. It could penetrate like a spirit, cascading down the walls or slithering along the ceiling until it found an opening.
People were drilling deep and tapping into the main vein of that ancient, underground reservoir of the Ogallala Aquifer, as big as the grassland itself, they said. These new boomers, a handful of men in town, wanted no part of Bennett’s soil-conservation districts. They wanted money to pump up a river of water from the Ogallala, pass it through a tangle of pipes, and spit it out over the sandpapered land. They would grow wheat and corn and sorghum, and they would make a pile, using all the water they wanted, you just wait and see. They talked as if it were the dawn of the wheat boom, twenty years earlier. Melt thought they had not learned a thing from the last decade. The High Plains belonged to Indians and grass, but few people in Dalhart shared his feelings.