Lennie’s Monologue: It’s them sycamores I remember. An’ the river, runnin’ deep and green, tinkling jus’ like the way Aunt Clara’s house keys used to when she was out on the porch about to unlock the front door. I’d hide my mouse in my pocket whene’er I heard them jinglin’ keys because Aunt Clara ne’er liked ’em rodents hangin’ around her house. I was a smart boy, I really was. I see the clearing an’ I know I’ve found it, I’ve found the safe spot. George come get me here before the water turns black and the sun goes down, he’s always been better at directions than me, plus he’s got an old’ compass nicked from a farmer back in Weed.
Maybe someday George’ll teach it to me. But not soon, he ain’t going to teach me no compass because he gonna be mad when he finds me. The bush is sticking into me like I’m wrapped up in the barbed wire. If only I was in a softer bush, a bush made of hair maybe. Like her hair, the girl back at the ranch. She should grow it out and make a blanket for me, as Aunt Clara did with sheep wool. Except I know it ain’t gonna happen because hair doesn’t grow on people who don’t breathe. But I didn’t mean to do it! I jus’ wanted to touch it, I jus’ wanted to pet it like I pet my mice.
I jus’ want to pet my mice…. The river still tinkles like ‘em keys, an’ I feel like I should hide my mouse, but I can’t this time. I can’t find my mouse because she’s back at the ranch. She’s back there lying on the hay-like one o’ those torn up beanie-dolls, the beans spillin’ outta here, prolly makin’ a mess o’ the barn. You weren’t so smart this time, Lenny, Aunt Clara couldn’t catch you but George’ll. George is cleverer than Aunt Clara, oh, George is cleverer than anyone. Soon he gonna come crashin’ inta here an’ he gonna give me hell over an’ over. He coulda’ had it so easy without me, he coulda’ gotten a nice Lil’ place, maybe even a girl. I could go, I coulda went any time. George, he doesn’t need me as I need him, why, he don’ need me at all. Here George comes, an’ he ain’t yellin’, why ain’t he yellin’? I like him yellin’ because that’s the only time he tells stories; not even at night when I ask him to, jus’ when he’s yellin’. I know George. I know he can make me feel as worthless as an empty can o’ tuna sometimes, but ever’ time he’ll tell me he needs me; he gonna tell me that I need him, and he needs me.
An’ in the end, he does, he does need me because I’m the only one who gives a hoot in hell about ‘im. Thas’ right Lenny, you ain’t useless, George needs you. He says he’s not mad, he wants you to know that he ain’t ever been mad about you. He ain’t lettin’ you leave him because we gonna get a little place. He says we’ll have a cow, pigs, and chickens, an’ he hadn’t forget about the alfalfa for my rabbits! Oh, I can see it now, I can see it right across the river! George promises that ever’body gonna be nice to me. There ain’t gonna be no more trouble, oh, George, can we go there now. I jus’ don’t want any more trouble. I jus’ want it to be me and him, him and me, George and Lenny, Lenny and George, the way it always is. An’ I’ll work harder than I ever worked before, I promise. Why I’ll work all day and all night, an’ I’ll have the strength because we’ll have all the bread and milk we want. Nobody gonna kicks us out because it gonna be OUR ranch. Guys like us got no fambly. They usually make a little stake an’ then they blow it in. They ain’t got nobody in the world’ that gives a hoot in hell about ‘em.
But not us. Because I got you, George, an’ you got me.
Messages from the book:
The Great Depression made life REALLY hard.
The American Dream is still what propels everyone forward, in the book it’s George and Lennie’s vision of their own ranch.
Racism is still prominent.
Sexism is also still prominent
It is called Of Mice and Men because in the Great Depression there is nothing difference between mice and men, everything is all equally fragile, that everyone is in the same boat, making us feel for these characters.