the Birmingham Journal
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Today, Janee wanted to go march downtown Birmingham, where all trouble happens. Mother wouldn’t let her go, for she would only allow her to go to our church and sing in the children’s choir. Mother told Janee that those white policemen would have their wild dogs and guns. But knowing Janee, she would have to find out for herself.
Janee combed her hair and bathed. Then she put her white shoes and gloves on to make mama think she was content with her answer. Mama, being so naïve, thought Janee had went on to sing with the choir. I knew Janee had been up to no good, but I couldn’t be the one to put any negatives thoughts in the air. But more than she knew, Janee had carried herself down to the streets of Birmingham.
Then, all of a sudden we all her this loud explosion. “Boom, boom, boom!” The first thing my mama said was “Janee!” as she hurried in despair out of the house. My other two sisters and I followed behind her as we all rushed to where the raucous had occurred. Disassembling, we searched frantically for our dear Janee in the downtown streets of Birmingham. Mother, who dug through a pile of brick and glass pulls out a shoe. She cries out “O, here’s the shoe that my baby wore, But, baby where are you?” We wondered if that was the last piece of Janee that we would have but that was the last thing we wanted to think about.
After our horrifying lost, things in Birmingham were forever different for us now three sisters. Mama very seldom went out of the house anymore, afraid of disappointment. She didn’t let us out either, not even to church. How she would always remind us of the tragedy of our beloved sister. But, I believe Janee would want us to be out there, facing the fears that mama has had all of these years.