English Comp. 2
06 November 2013
Marvin Macy Marvin Macy is a handsome loom-fixer in Carson McCullers’ The Ballad of The Sad Café. “For Marvin was the handsomest man in this region – being six feet one inch tall, hard muscled, and with slow gray eyes and curly hair” (McCullers’ 217). He had a hard beginning and was one of seven children. His parents were wild people who liked to roam around the swamp and fish. Marvin Macy is an evil man but love will change him. At the age of twenty-two, he asks Miss Amelia Evans to marry him. “Before the time when he loved Miss Amelia it could be questioned if such a person had within him a heart and soul” (217). After a stay in prison, Marvin returns to the town with shocking revelation. Marvin Macy being a troubled youth learns to love, yet evil again rises within him. Marvin Macy’s childhood is troubled by parents that view their children as burdens. The children are beaten nightly, only to finally be left to the mercies of the town in which they live. The children are frail. “They were as thin as little whitehaired ghosts, and they did not speak, not even to each other” (218). Upon abandonment, one simply walks away and vanishes; three others will die shortly after being passed around the elements. The other two Marvin and Henry are taken in and treated well. Perhaps the other child suffers and dies at the hands of his own parents. “There was a good woman in town named Mrs. Mary Hale, and she took Marvin Macy and Henry Macy and loved them as her own” (218). Henry is good and the kindest of persons, but Marvin proves nothing but trouble. Marvin carries for years with him an ear of a man he had killed in a razor fight. He degrades and shames young girls and always gets his way. It appears as if Marvin is Satan himself. Marvin loves Miss Amelia for two years before he declares himself. He reforms himself completely. He is good to his brother and the good woman that raised him, and he
Cited: McCullers, Carson. Collected Stories: Including “The Member of the Wedding” and “The Ballad of the Sad Café”. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1987. Print.