I love everything about this post, you spoke so movingly of what you experienced, Wendy, thank you. And yes, silence as a way to experience the world from a quieter, deeper perspective. (The photo of the hanging “coffins” featured Christian County, KY, which is where I was last week, visiting the area my grandfather’s family was from. Four lynchings there, three during the time my ancestors lived there, and it makes me wonder, and also appreciate how far my family, and I, have come, hopefully, since then, but how much farther I have to go.)

Expand full comment

Thanks so much for this comment, Annie. I appreciate what you're saying about the county where your ancestors lived and the changes since then. Personal growth can make such a difference--yet it's never finished either (well, not until we die anyway). I went on my first LLP 13 years ago and brought much different knowledge to this journey. And I learn more each day. Regarding the monument itself, a few of the "coffins" document lynchings in counties served by my high school, so that was an odd feeling.

Expand full comment

Thank you Annette for being the warrior that you are. You inspire me. Roxanne

Expand full comment

Thank you for this, Wendy. I grew up in the south during Jim Crow and the Civil Rights Movement.

I want everyone to understand and to see what I did as a child.

My grandparents lived in a small North Carolina town, where we visited often. It was a sundown town. On the state roads leading there I saw the shacks that most black people lived in, and watched them bent over in the cotton fields, working so hard in the blistering sun for wages that kept them living hand to mouth. Even as a little girl I would stare out the window and know in my gut that it was wrong, not yet understanding what "it" was. In that car, with my parents and 3 siblings, we never talked about it, thus it was normalized.

When my school was integrated 12 years after Brown v. Board of Education, I remember that our new black classmates looked scared and scarred. I also remember I thought black people were quiet, not realizing the fear they had to use their voices.

Thank you for participating in this event and supporting the teachers of this history. And, of course, your writing it brilliant. Roxanne

Expand full comment