Our Stories, Our Art Magazine

Memphis

Day Camp: The Right of Play

Dr. Sherwanda Y. Chism

I have the most incredible childhood memories of summer in Memphis. My daddy, Sherman L. Jones, worked for the Memphis Park Commission, the parks and recreation arm of the city. He was a community center director and, with his colleagues, provided entertainment for all of Memphis. The Memphis Park Commission, now called Memphis Parks, is …

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Finding Home in Memphis

Tracey Brown

I live in Memphis. The responses these four words elicit are telling. “That’s where Elvis is from.” “I hear they have good barbeque.” Or even, “I watch The First 48!”[i] inevitably followed by two questions: “Is it really that bad there?” and “How do you live there?” Of course, what runs through my head is, …

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My Memphis, My Home

Veverly Edwards

Before construction started in Tom Lee Park, I sometimes visited the park after a stressful day. I’d sit on a bench positioned on the green lawn overlooking the Mississippi River, close my eyes, and allow the sounds of the fast-moving currents to soothe my anxious thoughts and relax my tense muscles. As calming as the …

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Elevating Our Ancestors

Debra Brandon

Thoughts on the Connection between Youth, Crime, and Labels I once read a story about a group of young boys knocking on doors in search of work to do in the neighborhood. One lady opened her door and asked the boys why they needed the money. They wanted to buy ice cream from Dollar General, …

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A view of the entrance to Melrose Stadium, a staple and cultural landmark, in Orange Mound, one of the first Black neighborhoods in America and the birthplace and home of my father and his family.

Three Poems

Janay Kelley

We are swimsuits and water balloons and water guns and sprinklers The summer arrives right on time, for us Us – we a sight that can’t be missed Us – we sunkissed, real swift