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When Annawake is finished, Cash gets up and suggests that he marry Alice, so that Turtle could visit her grandmother during her visits to the Nation. The crowd goes berserk, and finally Alice gets up and says she will never marry someone in love with his television. Cash suggests they all go over to his house to "witness something."

On the way, Taylor begins to feel all she has lost, but also is curious to see what will happen next. In front of the whole community, Cash swings his rifle up over his head, and breaks his T.V. Alice gets ready to extend her family of women to include a man.

Analysis

Taylor's humble concession in Annawake's office demonstrates the way in which her character has changed, and anticipates the story that Uncle Ledger tells Annawake before the tribal council meeting. Taylor loves Turtle enough that she is willing to do whatever she can to give her the best life possible. Although it is clear that Taylor believes the choice is to have Turtle stay with her, Taylor also realizes that she could use a larger support structure. While Taylor is hard on herself, the novel itself does not condemn her, does not judge her as an inadequate mother. Telling a good portion of the story from Taylor's vantage point reveals to us that all of her actions are unselfish—she is working as hard as she can to provide for Turtle, and their hardship is mostly a result of the custody battle.

Andy Rainbelt's kind persona foreshadows a fulfilling end to the novel. His character can be thought of as a softer version of Annawake's. Although he too considers the interest of the tribe, his job is to address the needs of children, and he immediately makes Turtle feel comfortable and cared for. The meeting in his office foreshadows a decision that will leave Turtle feeling secure and happy.

The King Solomon story adds an interesting element to the final events in the novel. Although Ledger does not have any advice to give Annawake, he tells a story that is not Cherokee in origin, but was borne out of Western culture. This story should be thought of as a counterpart to the Cherokee's "Pigs in Heaven" story. In the end it is just another way of telling parents to be good to their children. More than anything, the story focuses Annawake's attention on the great display of love that her case involves. Both sides want Turtle, but neither wants to sacrifice the child's welfare for a favorable outcome. The story also encourages Annawake to be able to see both sides of the custody issue, as it is a story that does not belong to the Cherokee people. Ledger's choice suggests that he wants Annawake to think about her situation from someone else's vantage point.

The T.V. is an important symbol in this final section. The television is a manufacturer of loneliness in many ways. For Alice, it is the object that hinders her relationship with men. Perhaps more importantly, the T.V. makes promises that it can never fulfill. It was a T.V. culture—a culture of glitzy marketing—that led Cash to Wyoming, to work for the tourist trade. The reader remembers also the T.V. in Angie Buster's hotel room, where Taylor and Turtle watched representations of Indians that had nothing to do with real life. This false image is symbolically destroyed, now that Taylor and Turtle are included in the real life of the Cherokee Nation for good. Harland's comment at the beginning of the book that anything you want to see or do, you can watch on T.V. is totally unraveled by what Alice has found in the Cherokee Nation.