Part 2 One Night in the Lives of Slaves

Auntie Jean: Come on in chillum and tell Auntie Jean how these old tired bones can unconfused you. Maybe I can help you out.

Melinda: Auntie Jean, I am Melinda-Ms. Thelma Harris oldest. I wuz out there in deem fields singing with all the rest of deem guzs when all of a suddenly we all was struck by the Holy Ghost. We were so happy. We wished everybody felt the way we felt. Then that’s when it struck us. Why wuz it that Masa Sullivan don’t feel the way we feel? Why duz he have to own us? Why ain’t we free Auntie Jean? Then instead of feeling good, we’z begin to feel bad. Leastwise, I know I did. Then I begin to hate Masa Sullivan.

Auntie Jean: (Speaking softly in a very sympathetic tone) Hate Masa Sullivan?

Malinda: ( In a very strong voice) Yes’um , hate Masa Sullivan…….Hate his lily white skin and his dirty black heart for what he a doing to us!

Auntie Jean 🙁 In a very defensive tone) now chillum, Masa Sullivan are not exactly the worst Master a slave could have. Why, he don’t beat us or let none of his overseers beat us unless a slave done done something awfully bad. And, and our overseers don’t stand over us with guns and whips like some of the others do.

Helen: ( jumps up like a cheetah) Auntie Jean, this is Helen, I’m Thelma’s second child. There are eight of us in all and six of us is guzs. What I have to say hurts me to say. There you is, sitting there working on that BEAUTIFUL quilt for your mistress. Indeed it is beautiful. But the shame of it –you have worked the big house for three generations of Sullivans. You’ve been a-sewing expensive garments and making beautiful curtains and quilts till your old eyes is too blind to see the beautiful things that you can do anymore. Now, just look at what you and Mary Jay is a- wearing…..Rags! Why ain’t you got some of deem beautiful garments wrapped around your body? Now tell us Auntie Jane why ain’t you got some of deem beautiful draperies a-hanging from your shutters? And tell us why ain’t you got some of deem beautiful quilts you done made a-laying on your bed? Tell us Auntie Jean, please tell us why?

Auntie Jean: ( Slowed her rock, speaking softly) You see chillum, we don’t know why God saw fit to make us beholding to another race of folk; but if we is good whize we are toiling down here on earth, we is going to be free someday.

Lucy: Momma says you is a wise old woman, but to me you sound like a joke. You expect me to wait till I die to be free? Anyways, how can I be free buried down in the dark old earth with dirt thrown in my

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