Yesterday I read my younger daughter a book of poetry by Langston Hughes.
I never cared for poetry until I discovered Emily Dickinson, well into college, but her discovery -- at the age of 4 -- isn't what touched me most.
No, what I loved most is the way Rachel saw her life in the art that accompanied Hughes' poems. She saw a black woman in a headscarf, telling stories to a child cuddled in her arms, and she felt the connection immediately.
"Look, daddy. It's mommy holding me!" She saw the family that stood next to "My People" and knew at once that they were her people as well -- her father, her mother, her sister, and herself, all painted in black.
To Rachel, the color made no difference, nor did she seem to see that it should or even could. And I thought to myself, "Maybe there's hope for us yet."
Copyright © 2007 by David Learn. Used with permission.