The Hanging Tree, The End

Sitting deep in the woods, within a slight clearing, was the oak tree. Its trunk was massive and burly, with branches strong enough to bear the weight of the African American men, women, and children who met their final moments at its feet. Some of the white children, some of whom had been present during some …

The Hanging Tree, Part 5

Alice slipped on a pair of sunglasses when she walked outside the next morning due to  the glare of the sun, but primarily to cover her swollen eyes. Following her short, succinct meeting with the superintendent, the desire to both scream and give up had culminated in a weeping session in the ladies’ room. (She drily noted …

The Hanging Tree, Part 4

“Would you date someone outside of your race?” Nadine Maxwell peered at Alice over her wineglass following the latter’s question. Having since reconciled over their disagreement earlier that week (being friends since grade school meant they couldn’t live with an impasse between them for too long), the two sat on the floor in Alice’s living …

The Hanging Tree, Part 3

Unfortunately for Alice, however, Henry Cooper wasn’t leaving her mind anytime soon.  She thought so much about his admission that she found herself bursting into his classroom early Monday morning. Sitting at his desk, Henry looked up at her in surprise, his reading glasses nearly falling off in the process. He stood up. “Alice—”   “Did you actually …