Posted in Short Stories

Zora Neale Hurston: Spunk

Deal Me In 2021 – Week 24

[There] they go, big as life an’ brassy as tacks.

I think “Spunk” is my favorite Zora story so far. Spunk Banks struts about town, big and bold, with Joe Kanty’s wife. Spunk doesn’t have a guilty bone in his body and everyone in town knows how big and bold he is. Joe Kanty on the other hand is angry but timidly tries to ignore what’s going on. When push comes to shove, mostly by talk of the other residents of their small Florida town, Joe attempts a confrontation.

I don’t want to ruin for future readers how things get resolved but it’s not how one might think. There are also some nice supernatural elements that bring the story to a different level. Whenever someone asks about good ghost stories, I need to remember Zora Neale Hurston’s “Spunk”.

This is included in her collection Hitting a Straight Lick With a Crooked Stick. I read it when I selected the Five of Hearts for Week 24 of my Deal Me In 2021 short story project. Check out my Deal Me In list here. Deal Me In is hosted by Jay at Bibliophilopolis.

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