Walk Two Moons

Sharon Creech

Summary

Salamanca Tree Hiddle is traveling with her grandparents to Lewiston, Idaho to find her mother. Sal has just moved from her beloved farm in Bybanks, Kentucky to Euclid, Ohio with her dad. There she meets Phoebe Winterbottom, whom she has a lot in common with. On her road trip, Sal tells her grandparents all about Phoebe and her lunatic.

Thesis

The author used symbolism to help Sal cope with the personal tragedies in her life, such as losing her mother.

Blackberries

Blackberries help remind Sal of her mother because they were a favorite of hers and of her daughter's. Sal has many memories of her mother associated with blackberries. Take pg. 33 for example. Sal remembers picking blackberries with her mother and her saying; the blackberries at the top of the bush were for the birds, the ones at the bottom were for the animals and the rabbits, and that the ones at people height were for people. Another memory of Sal's is the blackberry kiss on pg.121. On this page Sal's mother was eating blackberries and proceeds to kiss a tree. Sal then went to that tree and kissed as well, she studied the tree closely before doing so, and saw a blackberry lip imprint on the trunk.

Tulips

To Sal tulips symbolized when her mother would be back, before the tulips bloom. This phrase is used often throughout the book, usually as to say: "I'll be back during spring." Sal also decides to name her stillborn sister Tulip, they buried her where tulips grew every spring (pg. 149). When a couple got married in Bybanks, the guests would sing that the newly-wed couple would leave and come back when the tulips bloomed (pg.78). Tulips symbolize Sal's mother's love for nature and he stillborn baby, and bring back many bittersweet memories to Sal.

Singing Trees

There were three singing trees throughout the novel, each of which plays a role as the story progresses. The first was in Bybanks, on the farm. Coming from the depths of the tree's foliage Sal heard a true birdsong that seemed to have no source, the closer she looked, the more it appeared that it was the tree who was singing. The night her mother died, the tree did not sing. The second tree was outside the hospital in South Dakota which reminded Sal of her home. Both of these trees were on pgs. 99-100. The last tree was on pg. 268, in Lewiston by her mother's grave. Singing trees remind Sal of home and show her connection to nature. Trees also represent Sal because of her middle name: "Tree."

Conclusion

Because Sal needed closure from her mother's passing, she relied on symbols to remind her of her mother, and Bybanks. Such as blackberries, which remind her of her mother's blackberry kiss. While telling her grandparents about Phoebe, Sal learns a lot about herself, and understands her mother better.