I Ran So You Could Fly
I’ve been trying to work on my fiction writing with varying degrees of success. recently, I had an idea for a novel. It’s fiction but loosely based on my ancestors and my 6th great grandfather who escaped slavery at 15 on up to present times. I’m not sure where the idea will take me in the end but thought I’d post a little teaser, keeping in mind this is a very rough first draft of that teaser. Note, the grammatical errors are intentional:
Introductions and a Note About Heaven
I didn’t start off knowing exactly what I was going to say here. I only knew that my story, our story needed tellin’. And who best to do that than me. And who better to tell it to but you.
My name is Jamison Jackson. To be more specific, that is the name I was assigned. I was born in 1764, or thereabouts in Jackson County, South Carolina. My parents were London and Liz’bet Jackson, both born in or around 1735.
These days, it’s hard to understand how I can say things like that in such vague terms. But back in my day, record-keeping wasn’t like it is now. And for slaves, well, it wasn’t much at all. Unless someone was being bought or sold, the only real record we had of comings and goings into and out of this world were the recollections of our elders and whatever might have been scratched down by whatever one of us might have learned to read and write some.
I was born on a rice plantation where my parents were slaves. I was also a slave. Mama told me that we come from someplace called Africa where the white man come and took us. I don’t know anything about Africa. Ain’t never seen it, except for on the maps I saw later on in life.
Mama told me Africa was a vast and proud land where people like us, coloureds, Blacks, I guess they call them now, walk proud and free. Some even as kings and queens. She never really had no kind of memory of it either from what I can remember, but she remembered enough to know what she was told about being kidnapped and brought across the great water to work for fat, sweaty white men.
We worked for Ol’ man Jackson, we did. From what I could tell, he wasn’t as bad as most. I recall he was a short man, yard and a half tall, maybe a bit more and just about as wide, with thick…