Reeves McCullers

The lonely passions of Carson McCullers

It may be true that The Heart is a Lonely Hunter (1940) – but in the case of Carson McCullers it could also be an indefatigable and exhausting one. Born Lula Carson Smith into a struggling middle-class family in Columbus, Georgia in 1917, she grew up hungering for great passions – and, like Hunter’s teenage protagonist Mick (her characters often carry gender-neutral names), she fell in love with classical piano at a young age. (Then Carson – not Mick – fell in love with her female piano teacher.) She married young a 20-year-old ex-serviceman named Reeves McCullers who, by all reports, was far more beautiful than her. Then together, almost