a Black man in America from a family of hoarders makes sense of his family’s life after segregation

This story does setting extremely well, everything is suffused with memory and emotion. It honestly feels like a novel packed into a short story format. There’s so much to dig into about loss, redemption, and old family wounds.

When he started working as a trash man, he was shocked at what people threw away. The broken chairs and rusted doorknobs, patched tires and dented pots, scrap metal and auto parts, used cans and bottles. So much of it could be mended and resurrected, unlike people when they die.

I love stories that capture a particular place and time. Setting is a character onto itself. This is not a story I typically read but it’s good at what it does. Read this if you want to feel sad about your personal family history, but in a good way.