Found Objects by Lolita Stewart-White

by Leslie Anne Mcilroy


 

In 1964 Charles Moore and Henry Dee were abducted by the Ku Klux Klan in Meadville, Mississippi. The teenagers were tortured, chained to a Jeep motor and dropped into the Mississippi River alive. Moore’s and Dee’s torsos were later found amidst the search for Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney, the missing American Civil Rights workers who were shot by the Klu Klux Klan while working to register African Americans to vote. “Found Objects” reconstructs the objects I imagine were pulled from the river along with the mangled bodies of the teenage boys. The objects in the poem are everyday things to show how commonplace and trivial the murder of black people was during that time.  This film is my tribute to Charles Moore, Henry Dee and other forgotten martyrs of the Civil Rights Movement.

Lolita Stewart-White, a Cave Canem fellow, is a winner of the Fred Shaw Poetry Contest of the Academy of American Poets, as well as a semi-finalist in the Boston Review Discovery Poetry Competition. She has published poems in Rattle, Callaloo and the Iowa Review. Her films have been exhibited at the Los Angeles Pan African Film & Arts Festival and the Seattle Langston Hughes's African-American Film Festival. Most recently she was named the winner of "Pitch Miami" sponsored by the Women's International Film Festival

Photo by Thomas Sayers Ellis

Photo by Thomas Sayers Ellis