In “Blue Talk and Love”, Sullivan scripts the journey of Earnestine, and how she comes to accept and embrace her race, sexuality, and overall appearance in relation to those around her. Earnestine has many different issues in her life that she struggles with, but most of all she hates the fact that she doesn’t look and act like the other girls in her school and ARYSE classes. Sullivan describes how Earnestine doesn’t fit the mold in any part of her life and contrasts that with Xiomara who is the “perfect” pretty, popular girl in everything she does.
Sullivan spends a lot of time throughout the piece comparing and contrasting Xiomara and Earnestine in order to help the readers understand quite how out of place Earnestine feels in her own skin. Sullivan uses Earnestine’s encounters in school specifically to set the tone on how Earnestine feels about herself and how she feels about her relationship with Xiomara . For example, Sullivan describes Earnestine’s experience in the science classroom with the “oobleck” to show that Earnestine finds herself to be awkward, unattractive and strange. Another example is when Earnestine has an argument with Jacob and he clearly brings out a sore spot for Earnestine by comparing her to Xiomara and even saying that Xiomara doesn’t like Earnestine. This situation proves that the relationship between Xiomara is seemingly one sided sometimes, and continues the idea that Xiomara is the “perfect” type of girl. Xiomara throughout the piece serves as a contrast to Earnestine, but also shares some important things with Earnestine. Xiomara and Earnestine share some similarities that in the end bring them closer and allow them to explore their relationship.
I overall really enjoyed this piece and found the way Sullivan wrote to be really captivating.