ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes


Home   ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)  


Off campus, our students won national, regional, and local prizes in literature and have published in anthologies and other journals.  After graduating, some students work in the industry at publishing companies, newspapers, teach workshops, or work at other journals.



*   *   *   *   *


For Frank Fitch


By Mona Lisa Saloy

Papa was born a slave in Alabama

before the Civil War's end

or so he thought.

Said, the war'd been over since 1865,

and it must've been past '85

leaving the Fitch plantation for Mississippi then New Orleans

Didn't nobody tell 'em that slavery was over,

was against the law to read and write,

but Papa figured it was time to be free.


     Papa lived free with a youngun

he loved forever as his brother.

Neither one saw their momma.

Didn't need no proof, Artigis says,

When Lanky Frank ate,

he ate too.

Papa said, "things get betta

and harda every day."

Said, "evva since their neck collars

(were) cut, they stuck

together like nappy hair on African folks

from the Fitch plantation

to New Orleans,"

to Papa's own Baptist Church,

Mt. Zion on North Robertson Street

his too-many, children, great-grandchildren,

and to television.

Past one hundred and ten,

Papa still called me a "yella child."

His tobacco wad of spit

landed just below the rim of his rusty tin

as he rocked on the from porch

smiling, thinking, and watching me

play in the dirt.


     I watched Papa rock, and think, and smile every day.

Papa never got to see me sit freely

on busses or go to a white movie house.

Papa never knew I'd go a white college or ride in an airplane.

Papa said, "things gonna be betta and harda

every day child."

posted 26 October 2005

*   *   *   *   *

Creative Writing at Dillard  / Dillard Faculty Focus  / English Faculty Focus Dillard / Dillard Writing Successes / Mona Lisa Saloy Table

*   *   *   *   *


*   *   *   *   *


Mona Lisa Saloy is associate professor of English and Founding Director of Creative Writing at Dillard University, and Director of The Daniel C. Thompson/Samuel Du Bois Honors Program.  Dr. Saloy's first collection of verse, Red Beans and Ricely Yours: Poems, won the T. S. Eliot Prize in poetry for 2005, published by Truman State University Press. She has also won fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities and from the United Negro College Fund/Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Her poems have appeared in anthologies, magazines, journals, and film. She received her PhD in English and MFA in creative writing from Louisiana State University and her MA in creative writing and English from San Francisco State University. Displaced by Hurricane Katrina, Saloy was a visiting associate professor of English and creative writing at the University of Washington for the 2005/2006 academic year. 

*   *   *   *   *

The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

*   *   *   *   *

Ancient African Nations

*   *   *   *   *

If you like this page consider making a donation

online through PayPal

*   *   *   *   *

Negro Digest / Black World

Browse all issues

1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        


*   *   *   *   *

The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery

*   *   *   *   *

The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

*   *   *   *   *

*   *   *   *   *

ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)



posted 1 June 2010



 Home   Mona Lisa Saloy Table