References in periodicals archive ?
7 : to fail to hear or see <I missed what he said.> <It's huge.
Both Rose Tattoos (birthmark and epigraph) become for Sula/Sula symbols of contradictory meanings as well as marks of "missed" identification.
With those dedicatory and epigraphic signs, one enters the narrative body of Sula, where missed meanings between conversants proliferate.
The absence of Ajax's "pig meat" utterance, yet its evocation through supplemental conceit, reveals its simultaneous properties as both missed yet not missing from the narrative.
Rather than "never mean[ing] anything," Sula's meanings are endless, incomplete always missed.
The variable referent of "girl" (Nel's invocation to Sula or to herself) points to language's plurisignifying potential to evoke missed people (others), the missed self, missed meanings, and all the desire encompassed in those yearnings for the "missed." The novel's inconclusiveness, then, reiterates Sula's identity as desire without object, as the narrative itself embodies that same sense of desire for the reader.