Smith Mayse

April 3, 2017

This is my maternal grandfather, Smith Mayse, born in Franklin, Kentucky, January 8, 1896. There are only three of us now who remember Smith Mayse and the man he was. It seems fitting that I do as much as possible to paint a picture of him and his unique life. This picture was taken shortly…

Continue Reading


March 18, 2017


In my first year of high school, I joined the band and orchestra. I would have preferred to be in the chorus with my two best friends, Shelby and Carol, but I couldn’t carry a tune. As they said, and still tell me, not in a bucket. I craved some sort of musical experience, so…

Continue Reading


March 11, 2017

new doll

The blare of the telephone woke Ann from a deep sleep. She glanced at the clock by her bed. The red letters said, 8:00a.m. It was Saturday morning, when she usually slept in. It could only be one person who would have the nerve to call her at that time on a weekend, her mother….

Continue Reading


February 25, 2017

green tearsdrops

Thomas Ridley spent his last night in the house where they’d lived for over thirty years….Hannah’s dream house. He’d barely dressed when the estate sale agents rang his bell. They stripped the bed and tossed the sheets in the washer. An hour later, they planted the signs, one on the corner of the block, one…

Continue Reading


February 13, 2017


The craving started for me in the Harmony Baptist Church on the east side of Detroit. Re-fashioned from an old bank building, the main room on the first floor appeared to be a regular church auditorium. At the front, an organ stood on one side, a piano on the other. The preaching happened in the…

Continue Reading

Salvation Army Summer Camp

January 21, 2017


We lived in the lower middle-class section on the south eastern side of Detroit. In the summer, my grandmother Mayse would have grandfather Mayse drop the family off at a large building in downtown Detroit. Grandma had to show our vaccination papers. A nurse would have us stick out our tongues and say, “Ah-h-h.” Another…

Continue Reading

A New Year

January 1, 2017


The change of the numbers on a calendar always brings reflections on years past. This year, 2016, was especially eventful for me. My precious baby sister faced pancreatic cancer head on. It brought on a reinforced bonding of the four sisters. We put our prayer warriors on the job and they came through for us….

Continue Reading

Daddy’s Girl

December 28, 2016

Donna and Daddy painting

A while back, as I sometimes do, I attended the meeting of a book club. They’d read “Deadly Ambition,” my political thriller. Some of them loved it, some of them liked it, and one woman said she didn’t buy it…part of the storyline, she meant. She thought the idea of Elaine, the secondary female in…

Continue Reading

November 30

November 30, 2016


This is a very important day in my life for two reasons. The first is that it’s my daughter’s birthday. Like most mothers,  I remember it vividly. At around four o’clock in the afternoon of the day before, a Thursday, I was changing the sheets. I picked up the corner of the mattress, and my…

Continue Reading


November 2, 2016

Clara looked over at me and saw that there were tears running down my cheeks. “What’s wrong, Maude?”  I shook my head. “Nothing is wrong, Clara. You and I just voted. It’s the first time in my life I felt like I mattered, that I had some say about what was going on. Things couldn’t…

Continue Reading