Sonnys Blues

Satisfactory Essays
Brothers tend to grow apart yet eventually find a way to revive an old beat up relationship. These brothers grew up on the rough streets of Harlem and went their separate ways. Sonny was a drug-addicted musician and his older brother was a high school algebra teacher with a family. The way the two brothers reunite through addiction, memories and strife make their bond seem stronger than ever. Sonny’s Blues, by James Baldwin, is a story about enlightenment through brotherhood when Sonny and his brother go to the club.
Sonny’s brother saw the newspaper while he was on his way to work and realized that his little brother was in trouble because of drugs. The beginning of the enlightenment started when Sonny’s brother ran into the man who got Sonny started on heroin, or how they call it “horse.” “A great block of ice got settled in my belly and kept melting there slowly all day long, while I taught my classes algebra. It was a special kind of ice. It kept melting. Sending trickles of ice water all up and down my veins but it never got less. Sometimes it hardened and seemed to expand until I felt my guts were going to come spilling out or that I was going to choke or scream. This would always be at the moment when I was remembering some specific thing Sonny had once said or done.” The fact that Sonny’s brother wanted to have nothing to do with helping Sonny made it seem that he did not care that his brother was killing himself but deep down he knew that I was killing him too. Sonny’s brother felt like he had to help Sonny but he should not because his brother got himself into the drug scene.
Sonny’s brother and him finally decided to reconcile when Gracie, Sonny’s niece, passed away at a young age. The brothers wrote back and forth and one thing became clear to Sonny’s brother, music affected him. Sonny’s brother always saw the music/jazz scene as an unhealthy lifestyle full of drugs and scandal. The only thing Sonny would really reinforce was that it was not because of the music. Sonny came back to New York after rehab from heroin and came to see the old neighborhood in Harlem. The brothers see that they have so much to be thankful for and that they will always have each other.
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