“Us didn’t get to go to church none, an’ us wa’n’t larnt nothin’. I’m
nigh ’bout ninety an’ I can’t read a line. I got some chillun kin read;
one can’t whut is sixty-five, but Henry he fifteen an’ he kin. De ma,
she go by de name of Pearlie Beasley, she can’t read neither, but she’s
a good fiel’ han’ an’ she patched dese breeches I’m wearin’ an’ dis ole
shirt. Miss, I ain’t got a coat to my name. Can’t go to church, so I
doan’ know dat dis any better’n slav’y time. Hit’s hard, anyway you got
to travel, got yo’ nose on de groun’ rock all de time. When pay day
come, ain’t nothin’ pay wid. Come git de rent, den you out do’s ag’in.
Bred an’ bawn in Sumter County, wore out in Sumter County, ’specks to
die in Sumter County, an’ whut is I got? Ain’t got nothin’, ain’t got
nothin’, ain’t got nothin’.

“But I’m a believer, an’ dis here voodoo an’ hoodoo an’ sper’ts ain’t
nothin’ but a lot of folk’s outten Christ. Ha’nts ain’t nothin’ but
somebody died outten Christ an’ his sper’t ain’t at res’, jes’ in a
wand’rin’ condition in de world.



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