Draft copy, Girl with a Camera


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Citation

Material Information

Title:
Draft copy, Girl with a Camera
Series Title:
Girl with a camera
Creator:
Meyer, Carolyn
Place of Publication:
Tampa, Florida
Publisher:
University of South Florida
Publication Date:
Language:
English
Physical Description:
1 online resource, 130p.

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Bourke-White, 1904-1971 -- Juvenile fiction
Biographical fiction
Women photographers -- Fiction
Historical fiction

Notes

Abstract:
Partial draft of Girl with a Camera; includes opening through chapter 12. Includes notes by editor Carolyn P. Yoder and edits by Carolyn Meyer.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of South Florida
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
H43-00012-024 ( USFLDC DOI )
h43.12-24 ( USFLDC Handle )

Postcard Information

Format:
Mixed Material

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Full Text

PAGE 2

Sometime after midnight, a thump—loud and jarring. A torpedo slams into the side of our ship, flinging me out of my bunk. The ship is tr ansporting thousands of troops and hundreds of nurses. It is December 1942, and our country is at war. I am Margaret Bourke-White, the only woman photographer covering this war. The U.S. Army Air Forces has handed me a plum assignment: photographing an Allied attack on the Germans. I wanted to fly in one of our B-17 bombers, but the top brass ordered me to travel instead in the flagship of a huge convoy, headed from England through the Straits of Gibraltar towards the coast of North Africa. It would be safer than flying, the officers argued. As it turns out, they were dead wrong. Beneath the surface of the Mediterranean, German submarines glide, silent and lethal, stalking their prey. One of their torpedoes has found its mark. I grab my camera bag and one camera, leaving everything else behind, and race to the bridge. I hear the order blare: There is not enough light and not enough time to take photographs. I head for Lifeboat No. 12 and board with the others assigned to it, mostly nurses. We’ve drilled for it over and over, but this is not a drill. My mouth is dry with fear. Our lifeboat drops into the sea. The boat is filled with water from the torpedo splashback. We use our helmets to bail. The rudder is broken. All around us in the water people are struggling to survive. We rescue some, lose others. A voice cries in the darkness, “Help me! I’m

PAGE 3

all alone!” We try to row toward that desperate voice, but without a rudder we can do nothing. The cries grow fainter. Then, silence. I take my turn rowing, my arms aching and my hands blistered. Someone in a nearby lifeboat begins to sing, “You are my sunshine.” We all join in. Even off-key, it makes the rowing easier. We watch silently as flames swallow our wounded ship. The rest of the convoy has scattered, to keep from giving the German U-boats another target. In the bright moonlight I see that a single destroyer stays behind, and we wonder if theyit will come to pick us up. But no—they drop depth charges to try to get rid of any remaining German submarines. Someone is shouting into a megaphone, but we can’t make out the words. Maybe he’s wishing us luck. The destroyer sails on. Now we are entirely alone. The moon sinks into the dark sea. I think longingly of the chocolate bars, emergency rations I’d tossed out of my camera bag to make room for extra lenses. The hours pass. I’m wet to the skin, wet and cold. Hungry, too. I could do with a bite of chocolate. Dawn comes slowly, the pale colors blooming in the eastern sky. I wonder again if I will survive, if any of us will. Irrationally, I mour n the loss of my elegant cosmetics case, covered with a beautiful ostrich skin and filled with ivory jars from Hong Kong. I can’t imagine why it matters. It’s December twenty-second—the winter solstice, someone reminds us. No wonder the sun is so late making its appearance, and we cheer when it finally it does, risingrises majestically from a flat gray sea. I get out my camera and begin taking pictures. We look miserable and bedraggled, but we’re alive. One of the nurses jokes that she’s ready to place her order for breakfast: two eggs, sunnyside up, no broken yolks please. “And hot coffee!” adds another. “Buttered toast!”

PAGE 4

In midafternoon someone spots a flying boat, a large seaplane. It flies low over us, waggling its wings, and we all wave back, assuring each other that help will come soon. The sun sinks lower, lower. There is no sign of rescuers . It wonÂ’t be long before darkness descends, and they wonÂ’t be able to find us. Wet, cold, exhausted, crowded in with dozens of others, all wondering what will happen to us, if we will live or die, I remember my home, my parents, those early years when I had no idea where life would take me, only that I wanted it to be bold and exciting, anything but what it was then.

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did

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No card playing. No gum chewing. No slang. No silk stockings. Why is it better? VotÂ’s der dum-goozled idea?

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good perfect. ironic

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IÂ’m sheÂ’s isnÂ’t wouldnÂ’t

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looked

PAGE 10

No nicknames. Heterodon platirhinos.

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any

PAGE 12

look thought.

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jar of pickles

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very

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the next day

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too The yellow dog was tired and hungry and also very dirty. Was The dog trotted wearily down the dark alley, searching for something—anything—to eat. Stickers matted his filthy yellow fur.

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I had won! The Frog Book, The Moth Book, The Reptile Book

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a star

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Should women be granted the right to vote?

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lot

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I am Sir Oracle, and when I ope my lips, let no dog bark. A daughter of the gods, divinely tall, /And most divinely fair. Her glorious fancies come from far,/Beneath the silver evening star,/But yet her heart is ever near

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Margaret B. White. Nickname: Peggy. Ambition: Herpetologist

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women

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had other school class

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Our Red and Gray weÂ’ll neÂ’er forget, /WeÂ’ll always to our Class be true. /What eÂ’er we do thruout our lives /WeÂ’ll keep unstained the Red and Blue.

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excellent

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do

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driven different. do

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From now on everything will be different,

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me

PAGE 48

that a mature and intelligent young woman!

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Celebration?

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When he kisses me? No touching below the neck

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Should I have bought him a gift? But what would have been the right thing to buy? I wondered if Gil Cc ould Gil see how nervous I was ?. H—h ad that taken it all off all the lipstick ? Should I go to the ladies room and put on more? Or wait until after I’d eaten? Bonsoir, m’sieur et mam’selle

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poulet, poulet potage d’oignon vol au vent potage mousse au chocolat demitasse de café think

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her

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clink clink me? something

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Shall I ask him to sit down?

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see

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boys— men pala inky . pala inky my

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pala inky

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me

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see

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How on earth did she know about

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If you should decide to pay me a visit.

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care! beautiful

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my theirs

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vs The Michiganensian Ensian

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Â’Ensian

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future

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Ensian

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Â’Ensian

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boys Ensian. crazy my

PAGE 97

Is this the wallflower who never got asked to dance even once in all the time we knew her?

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why?

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that

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half

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you quite quite

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I want you all to myself.

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The mind is its own place, and in itself Can make a heav'n of hell, a hell of heav'n. Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.

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everybody

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you?”

PAGE 111

was

PAGE 114

driven

PAGE 118

did

PAGE 120

what

PAGE 122

Ensian Ensian

PAGE 124

I

PAGE 126

think


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