Unclean, her feet remained outside amid detritus and debris–their nails blackened by names… Girl, Motherless, Poor. Her feet were cracked and caked with another word… Slave. And though “masters” believed they owned her, she bowed to no earthly lord, except hunger and cold, perhaps. So she toiled in the fields outside the big house while her toes grew roots and her limbs grew sturdy.
Seasons saw the tilling of soil. Generations passed and so did her soul, eventually. Girl, Motherless, Poor, Slave… no more. I would know her as Adored by none more than her children, grandchildren and their children for whom freedom was hard-won. History would have her remembered as only an etching in ink, or so the uncaring would deem.
girl… 8 yrs.
Except… Upon her shoulders, stood those who reached up to look through windows and, eventually, walk through that front door.
America still grapples with issues surrounding slavery, the legacy of hatred and belief in one’s ethnic superiority over another. As a public school teacher, I open children’s minds, letting in the stories of history–never letting our future forget the struggles of our past. We sing civil rights songs in my classes every year. They are my doors through which we travel to shared hopes and dreams–perpetuating the right of freedom, equality, dignity and the pursuit of happiness.