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Bless Me Ultima1

Bless Me, Ultima is a story about the maturation of a young Mexican-American boy, Antonio Marez, struggling with many questions about his destiny, life and death, and good and evil. Ultima who comes to live with Antonio becomes his caretaker and his teacher. Antonio learns there are powers in the world that differ from his beliefs in the Catholic faith. Ultima teaches Antonio that the tragic consequences of life can be overcome by the magical strength that resides in the human heart (237). Ultima shows Antonio how to experience the magic of life with his heart and not with his eyes. For the first time, he sees the river not as something to be feared but as a source of life, I had been afraid of the awful presence of the river, which was the soul of the river, but through her I learned that my spirit shared in the spirit of all things (15). The river is both creative and destructive in nature. It is this new magical way of seeing the river that will help Antonio understand many of the events that occur in the novel. Ultima also teaches Antonio to appreciate nature and helps him develop a spiritual relationship with the plants of the llano. It is this growing harmony with the earth that will later help Antonio connect with his heritage and the ancient ways of his ancestors. Ultima teaches him the magic of nature, even the plants had a spirit, and before I dug she made me speak to the plant and tell it why we pulled it from its home in the earth (39). Antonio learns which plants are good for healing but more importantly he learns of Ultimas nobility and grace as they wonder the llano together. Ultima teaches Antonio that one must give back to the earth what has been taken away. It is this spiritual connection with the earth that helps Antonio understand that the tragic consequences of life can be overcome by the magical strength that resides in the human heart (237). As Antonio deepens his understanding of the river and the...

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