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  • The Magnolia Literacy Project

LaWanda Dickens "A Stroll down My Ancestors' Lane"

During an autumn walk on the land where her great grandmother was raised, Dickens observed nature's imagery while delighting in the energy she inherited from her ancestors who once lived on the property.

An educator, writer, and former journalist, Dickens is a Brookhaven, Mississippi, native and graduate of Jackson State University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in English/Journalism and a Master of Arts in English. She also attended Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan, where she studied Composition and Rhetoric. Her research interests include Hip Hop studies; service-learning in college composition courses; and students' transfer of classroom knowledge to campus and community leadership.



"A Stroll down My Ancestors' Lane"


During an afternoon walk in the country,

on ancestral land

in Mississippi,

Lincoln County,

Brookhaven,

south of Jackson,

I was treated to an art soirée.

I watched tree limbs perform,

dancing and swaying

rhythmically

to soft, cool

fall breezes.

Leaves cartwheeled

through the air,

sporting bold, fashionable colors –

orange, yellow, red, purple, and brown.

Yellow butterflies, some splashed with black,

performed too,

gracefully gliding

before a chic backdrop of black-eyed Susans.

A red clay exhibition

decorated my path,

in hill formation

standing firmly

along the roadside.

Throughout the event,

my nostrils welcomed

the aromatherapy of fresh cedar and pine.

I enjoyed the show,

paid for by my ancestors.

Tomorrow, I will go again.


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