Abiding Faith Letter 53

Abiding Faith Letter 53


ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes



Her son was then six years old. In 1986, she moved to Washington, D.C., to obtain a social security

card and a regular job. Though she fled Sergeant Samuel Doe’s regime in fear of her life, she was

not able to obtain the status of political refugee until eight years later in 1993, three years after

 a war began in Liberia to oust President Doe.



Letters of an Abiding Faith:

Legacy of a Slave’s GrandDaughter to her Son

written by Ella Lewis to her Son (Rudolph Lewis)

*   *   *   *   *

Letter 53

May 20, 1990

Dear Son,

Just a line to let you hear From me. This leave me doing Better. I received your letter glade to hear From you as all ways.

I under stand What you mean about Pride. But listen Doc Swallow your pride and ask your peoples For a Favor. I dont thank there no one will turn you down. We all Fall in Bad Luck. And if you had to give up any thing give up the apartment Because you need your Car.* Maybe you Can store your Furniture at Teens house By So doing you want have to be Buying Furniture and if you Behind in your Car payment ask Lucinda to lend you the money. Grover dont have to Know.

Dont Be Embarrassed You Be on your Feet again. Every Body have their Bad days. I trust that you Find Some thing Else Soon. You pray I praying For you as all ways. The Few Pennies I send you I send you I dont want you to pay me Back. That what mothers are For. If I dont help you when you in need What kind of Mother would I Be. Let me Know if you get the letter I Sending you a Check.** I want you to Buy you Some Food. When I Come up I bring you Some Food. So Stay sweet and Calm Every thing going Be Fine.

Love Mother

Maybe Celestine can put you up For a while Ask her. All she Can say yes or no.

*   *   *   *   *


*I still owed money on the Escort GT I bought new. I kept it for another six years until someone hit me and totaled it. The accident occurred one morning while I was on my way to work at the AFL-CIO archives in Silver Spring. The archive experience was during my study at Maryland’s library school.

**Things were getting tight. But it all worked out by June. I didn’t have to move or to borrow money from Lucinda. One of my more interesting affairs during this period was with a young Liberian woman, Mydea, whom I met February 12, 1988. As an organizer for 1199, I managed its fledgling educational program and the local provided its hall space for classes, which I oversaw. Mydea, one of the adult teachers, was hired on a part-time basis by the Baltimore City Community College and was commuting from a suburban community outside of Washington, D.C. We became good friends, especially after she moved to Baltimore that year.

In December 1985, Mydea and her son Tuan fled Monrovia for the United States and arrived in New York City. Her son was then six years old. In 1986, she moved to Washington, D.C., to obtain a social security card and a regular job. Though she fled Sergeant Samuel Doe’s regime in fear of her life, she was not able to obtain the status of political refugee until eight years later in 1993, three years after a war began in Liberia to oust President Doe.

Mydea had been a government official since 1976, four years before the coup, working in the Institute of Public Administration. After the coup, from 1980 to 1983, she worked in the Administration of Education; and then until 1985, she was the Director of Personnel and then Human Resources Manager for the Liberia Corporation, handling development, personnel, and benefits. She also sat ion the Board of Union of Producers and Suppliers of Electricity (UPDEA). 

See commentary for Letter 54

*   *   *   *   *’s 25 Best Selling Books



#1 – Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark #2 – Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree #3 – Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane #4 – Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper #5 – Stackin’ Paper 2 Genesis’ Payback by Joy King #6 – Thug Lovin’ (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark #7 – When I Get Where I’m Going by Cheryl Robinson #8 – Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby #9 – The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 – Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 – Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 – Don’t Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 – For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 – For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 – Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 – The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 – Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 – Purple Panties: An Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 – Stackin’ Paper by Joy King

#20 – Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 – The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 – Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 – Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 – I Dreamt I Was in Heaven – The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter


#1 – Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable #2 – Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans #3 – Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane #4 – Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper #5 – Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You’re Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant #6 – Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey #7 – The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight #8 – The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing #9 – The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 – John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 – Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 –The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 – The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 – The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 – Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can’t Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 – Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 – Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 – A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 – John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 – Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 – Age Ain’t Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 – 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino #23 – Chicken Soup for the Prisoner’s Soul by Tom Lagana #24 – 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 – Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

*   *   *   *   *

Super Rich: A Guide to Having it All

By Russell Simmons

Russell Simmons knows firsthand that wealth is rooted in much more than the stock  market. True wealth has more to do with what’s in your heart than what’s in your wallet. Using this knowledge, Simmons became one of America’s shrewdest entrepreneurs, achieving a level of success that most investors only dream about. No matter how much material gain he accumulated, he never stopped lending a hand to those less fortunate. In Super Rich, Simmons uses his rare blend of spiritual savvy and street-smart wisdom to offer a new definition of wealth-and share timeless principles for developing an unshakable sense of self that can weather any financial storm. As Simmons says, “Happy can make you money, but money can’t make you happy.”

*   *   *   *   *

1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created

By Charles C. Mann

I’m a big fan of Charles Mann’s previous book 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, in which he provides a sweeping and provocative examination of North and South America prior to the arrival of Christopher Columbus. It’s exhaustively researched but so wonderfully written that it’s anything but exhausting to read. With his follow-up, 1493, Mann has taken it to a new, truly global level. Building on the groundbreaking work of Alfred Crosby (author of The Columbian Exchange and, I’m proud to say, a fellow Nantucketer), Mann has written nothing less than the story of our world: how a planet of what were once several autonomous continents is quickly becoming a single, “globalized” entity.

Mann not only talked to countless scientists and researchers; he visited the places he writes about, and as a consequence, the book has a marvelously wide-ranging yet personal feel as we follow Mann from one far-flung corner of the world to the next. And always, the prose is masterful. In telling the improbable story of how Spanish and Chinese cultures collided in the Philippines in the sixteenth century, he takes us to the island of Mindoro whose “southern coast consists of a number of small bays, one next to another like tooth marks in an apple.” We learn how the spread of malaria, the potato, tobacco, guano, rubber plants, and sugar cane have disrupted and convulsed the planet and will continue to do so until we are finally living on one integrated or at least close-to-integrated Earth. Whether or not the human instigators of all this remarkable change will survive the process they helped to initiate more than five hundred years ago remains, Mann suggests in this monumental and revelatory book, an open question.

*   *   *   *   *

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 /

George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

*   *   *   *   *

The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

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

*   *   *   *   *


*   *   *   *   *



update 30 December 2011





AFLTable  Rudy’s Page   Letter 54

Post Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.