“I’m looking for a house/In the world/Where white shadows will not fall/There is no such house/Dark brother/ No such house/At all.” Some say Langston Hughes wrote this poem for the love of his life, and, at times, his muse, Elsie Roxborough. Some say this is a ridiculous notion, that Elsie certainly didn’t deserve to be immortalized in a poem. Some say she was a disgrace to all the races she represented over the years. Some say, if a person is of a number of races, why shouldn’t they reap the benefits of each one? Some say the benefits to anything come with the repercussions of everything. And, here I sit, writing in my kitchen, a cat in my lap and a poodle at my feet. Me, a middle-class white girl who grew up a lower class-ish white girl in a suburban Dallas town miles from anything important or cultural or awe-inspiring, who dares to decide to tell you the tale of a black aristocrat from Michigan who decided to pass for white, and occasionally, Hispanic. How dare I. But, I am free falling down a rabbit hole that, seemingly, has no bottom. And, you just have to know this story. Because, Elsie was something else. She burned both ends of a candle we call race. Somehow, she wound up with all wick and no wax. But first, let’s drop the Roxboroughs into history.
Columns & Editorials
2021 was a year of major changes for Lori and I. We had decided to get out of the bustle of the big city that Forney has become and embrace a simpler life in the country. For months we focused on a four-county area to look for a new home: Kaufman, Rockwall, Collin and Hunt. Then one day Lori showed me a beautiful home that had come up on Realtor.com, on ten acres 2 miles north of Lone Oak, Texas. It had been on the market for a couple of months but we didn’t see it until the price had been reduced and it fell just outside the top of the budget range we had been searching in. The house was built in 1892 and was more than twice the size of our little house on Woodcrest in Forney, where we had lived for 38 years. A bonus was that it had a huge workshop and a barn on the property. We put in an offer and eventually closed on the property. We later found out the couple we bought it from had moved from Forney 12 years earlier. They had done a lot of improvements to the house and property since then.
We read in the paper that severe storms were coming in the north part of our country. It appears that this time the people were prepared for it and were okay when the storm came. I believe the storms coming are a good example of the storms Christians face almost daily. Jesus told his followers to look to GOD for protection when the storms come to us. More often than not we always try to protect ourselves without GOD’S help. I believe GOD is sometimes broken hearted at the things we try without going to Him with our troubles. In the fast paced life we live today I believe GOD is pleased when we go to Him in prayer and tell Him about our days living on this world. GOD has given us His Holy Spirit to guide us and protect us through this life.
Dear Aunt B Readers,
There is something I had never thought of when I am studying my Bible. When I study a part of my bible I can go back to that point of time in my mind. For example, if I study about Noah building the ark I can go back to that point of time. I can see a giant ark sitting on dry ground. I can see the lush green trees and green fields of grass and vegetables, and fruit trees everywhere. It had not rained on the earth at that time. The ground was watered when water came out of the ground and watered everything. People did not eat meat or animals at that time. It was after the flood that GOD told Noah that animals, birds and fish would be for food for the people as they spread over the earth.
Dear Aunt B,
IS AN OATH OF OFFICE JUST WORDS?
If you’re a certain age, you’ll need to withdraw money from some of your retirement accounts each year. But in 2022, the amount you must take out may be changing more than in other years – and that could affect your retirement income strategy.
“I would be normal, and if someone did something wrong, I would send him to the dungeon,” says Claire, age 6.
WHAT CHRISTIANS CAN SMILE ABOUT?
Dear Aunt B Readers,
My mom died. I wrote that sentence a hundred times in a hundred different ways, all equal in their floweriness and complicated sentence structures. All versions sounded equally ridiculous. Perhaps a harsh and unforgiving occurrence needs a harsh and unforgiving opening line. Truth be told, I don’t want to write about her death this week. It’s just that I can’t seem to write about anything else. Besides, at 12:30 am it will mark one week since her passing. I haven’t cried all day today. Before this column is finished, that will all change. If you feel like crying along with me, I’d appreciate the company. This is what we call a full-blown mascara alert. Spoiler: I thought, as this is not my first rodeo in the substantial loss and grief arena, I could get through the passing of my mother somewhat unscathed. I’ve never been
Dear Aunt B,
The year 2020 threw public education a furious curve ball. The system swung and missed. Strike one. We were glad to see 2020 end thinking 2021 would have something much better to look forward to. What a trick. We got a repeat of what we just left. More haphazard planning, inconsistent information and reactive pandemic responses that affected student achievement. Strike two. Now 2 years into the pandemic, public education, students and families are still in an upheaval with no plan of stability in sight.
Dear Aunt B,