I live in Southern California and visited Octavia Butler's grave last week. Here is a link to what the grave site looks like http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=13473971.
When I got there, it was difficult to find the exact spot where she was buried. Multiple attendants from the funeral home came out onto the grounds to help me locate it.
Ultimately, I used the landmarks in the photos above to find it on my own. It was totally overgrown with grass, completely covered up and overgrown. They sent someone out from the grounds staff to clear it for me after to finish what I'd started by hand. The gardener then asked me if there were any more of my relatives that I needed to have uncovered (with the weed-whacker). I guess she is kind of like a relative to me.
It was apparent that no one had visited for a long time. If you live in the area you should look her up. I think Ms. Butler lives on in her writing so it probably doesn't matter to her what her grave looks like....but still.
just wanted to share my thoughts on the experience. I am writing my doctoral dissertation on her work and this was something I had to do in the course of my writing. Next time, I think I will take flowers to the little plot that is right next to a cinder block wall. She certainly beautified and challenged this world before she left it too soon.
We should challenge ourselves to be and do more to beautify this existence as well.
Just found out that my Heroine Author OCTAVIA BUTLER is interned here in th Los Angeles Area. Her Earthday was June 22, and I wanted to know if anyone here wanted to do SOMETHING for that day.Anyone here in the LA area interested in doing something or know of events honoring this elder who has passed on?
Congratulations, Lisa! What an amazing opportunity! I was honored to meet Ms. Butler and she remains one of my favorite authors.
Ayana, thank you for having her grave site tended to, you're fantastic!
Lisa Bolekaja said:
Ayana, you were right on time for this.
I recently got accepted into the Clarion Science Fiction & Fantasy Writing Workshop for the 2012 Class, and was awarded an Octavia Butler Scholarship from the Carl Brandon Society. It was Octavia herself who told me about applying to Clarion years ago.
Last weekend I was watching a documentary on Zora Neale Hurston (one of my other favorite writers), and had an epiphany: I needed to go visit the gravesites of people who have influenced my life. I started thinking, "I need to go thank Octavia, Zora, Malcolm X and others who have shaped my mind."
Thank you for posting this. I will be in Los Angeles next weekend to present at an Organization of Black Screenwriter's meeting (I'm 2nd Vice President), and will go visit Octavia right after to say thank you. And I'm bringing flowers! And cowrie shells, some Haitian rum, and my cuban cigar!
Best wishes on your dissertation. I would love to read it when it's published!