They could not meet each other s glances. Finally, the sun comes out, turning the sky bright blue and sending the children bursting out into the sunlight. And they had written small stories or essays or poems about it: I think the sun is a flower, That blooms for just one hour. But she did not move; rather 2. The world outside is awash with tidal waves and a perpetually growing and collapsing jungle. The girl, standing in the open, held out her hand. One of the children, Margot, moved to Venus from five years earlier, and she is the only one who remembers sunshine, since the Sun shone regularly on Earth.
The planet is covered with thick jungles and unruly weeds, perpetually caught in a cycle of growth and destruction. The children put their Vocabulary surged surjd v. She begins to cry as the children stare up at the sky and the first cold drops fall on their faces. The experience of nature brings a sudden sense of peace. Somewhat intentionally, it seems, she holds herself apart, demonstrating the extent to which she is fixated by these memories.
They seem to forget about the incident immediately. If they tagged her and ran, she stood blinking after them and did not follow. Again, William tries to engage Margot in conflict even though her behavior is inoffensive. And what she was waiting for was in her eyes. As the two-hour summer approaches, the schoolchildren read and write short stories about the sun. They looked at everything and savored everything.
All of these things make William and the other children jealous and angry. They stood looking at the door and saw it tremble from her beating and throwing herself against it. The world ground to a standstill. Their faces were solemn and pale. The sun fades and the wind begins to rise as the children turn and begin to trudge back to the underground classroom, smiles vanished. You wouldn't want to get caught out! Sometimes, at night, she heard them stir, in remembrance, and she knew they were dreaming and remembering gold or a yellow crayon or a coin large enough to buy the world with.
She was a very frail girl who looked as if she had been lost in the rain for years and the rain had washed out the blue from her eyes and the red from her mouth and the yellow from her hair. Now she stood, separate, staring at the rain and the loud wet world beyond the huge glass. There was talk that her father and mother were taking her back to Earth next year; it seemed vital to her that they do so, though it would mean the loss of thousands of dollars to her family And so, the children hated her for all these reasons of big and lit- tle consequence. In this scene, we also see the power that the sun continues to hold for Margot. And the jungle burned with sunlight as the children, released from their spell, rushed out, yelling, into the springtime. She knew they thought they remembered a warmness, like a blushing in the face, in the body, in the arms and legs and trembling hands.
For Margot, life on Venus is all but unbearable and the sun is all-important, and she makes no secret of these feelings. Behind the closet door was only silence. All day yesterday they had read in class about the sun. It was the color of flaming bronze and it was very large. Meanwhile, Margot has experienced the shattering disappointment of expectations for a day that had become all-important in her mind, demonstrating the danger of relying on such fleeting moments.
The sky darkened into midnight in a flash. She began to cry, looking at it. Then, wildly, like animals escaped from their caves, they ran and ran in shouting circles. Mercury is closer to the Sun, but Venus is hotter than Mercury because its atmosphere is full of thick clouds of sulfuric acid strong enough to etch metal and burn through your flesh. Their faces were solemn and pale. But she remembered and stood quietly apart from all of them and watched the pat- terning windows.
A boom of thunder startled them and like leaves before a new hurricane, they tumbled upon each other and ran. They were all nine years old, and if there had been a day, seven years ago, when the sun came out for an hour and showed its face to the stunned world, they could not recall. It was the color of stones and white cheeses and ink, and it was the color of the moon. Venus has a peculiar climate: every seven years, the sun comes out for just two hours. A boom of thunder startled them, and like leaves before a new hurricane, they tumbled upon each other and ran. She was an old photograph dusted from an album, whitened away, and if she spoke at all her voice would be a ghost.
It was the color of stones and white cheeses and ink, and it was the color of the moon. They looked at their hands and feet, their faces down. The return to waiting brings with it renewed awareness of how painful drawn-out anticipation can be. They crowd eagerly by the classroom door. But all too soon, a girl begins to wail—she has caught a single raindrop in her palm.
Ask Yourself If life were found on Venus, how might people react? They came slowly to look at her opened palm. Lightning struck ten miles away, five miles away, a mile, a half-mile. The world ground to a standstill. They looked at each other and then looked away. Through this connec- tion of the imagined and the real, Bradbury's fiction challenges the reader to question where we might be headed and what we might learn about ourselves now.