The Dawn of Luther B’s Best Day

We often use sarcasm or lies to cover how we truly feel because we find that it’s easier to lie and hide ourselves, than to speak truthfully about hard topics such as abandonment, mental illness, or family issues. For some people it creates a better reality to live in because if they believe in the lies, they won’t have to acknowledge the truth. Which is shown in the poem “The Dawn of Luther B’s Best Day” as it reveals Luther B’s perspective on being left behind and tied to his owner’s tree as hurricane Katrina approaches. The author covers Luther B’s situation with lighthearted words of “Best Day” and “Dawn” as if to hide the fact that Luther B is in danger and was abandoned by his owner. Dawn is a symbol of new beginnings, hope, rebirth, etc. The title presents a false sense of what is happening to Luther B because to the reader they may infer that Luther B is celebrating something happy. Even though his situation described in the poem is sad and ironic in comparison to the bright and positive title. The author had a purpose in naming the poem ironically to catch the reader’s attention and make us reflect on why such an event would be Luther B’s best day. One can infer that the author used such irony as a way to mask the situation of Luther B being abandoned and left to fend for himself and instead see it in a more positive way.

Discussion Questions: How does positive thinking end up becoming an excuse for people to normalize other people’s problems? Does an individual’s intent affect the reason to lie to protect yourself and the people around you from your own turmoil?