“My Landlady’s Yard” by Dagoberto Gilb first published in the Texas Observer, an American political newsmagazine based out of Austin Texas, finds surprising meaning in the futility of yard work. Through out the essay Gilb uses metaphors of his law to explain the racial tensions of immigrants in his boarder town.
Gilb talks about his landlady and her need to up keep all the plants in the yard. Gilb uses the landlady as a metaphor for the government; the power in charge. She is the one who is pushing to make plants grow in an environment where they may not prosper.
Another thing Gilb talks about is the actual planting of different plants. “And she wants those Yankee plants and that imported grass to continue to thrive as they would in all other American, nondesert neighborhoods, even if these West Texas suburbs moved on to the east and west many years ago…” (67) he says of his land lady. Gilb uses the imported grass and Yankee plants as a metaphor for the Blacks and Hispanics that have been forced to live together in his boarder town. When talking about the East and West he is referring to the complete separation of the two races, living in there own towns, with there own people; not wanting to integrate.
In my opinion the strongest metaphor that Gilb uses is that of the trash. He starts off by describing all the trash that flows through his lawn and after states “I want the image of all the trash, as well as the one of me spraying precious water on this dusty alkaline soil to get your attention. Because both stand for the odd way we live and think out here, a few hundred miles (at least) away from any every place else in the United States” (68). By this he is referring that his landlady (the government) is finding ways to cover up the problem of the trash (immigration) instead of solving it; which is in a way, a form of denial. He continues by making the statement that “If green grass is the aspiration, the realization of an American...