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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Green (10/22/09)

TITLE: The Grass Ain't Always Greener
By Debra Elliott


The grass is always greener, but not where I live....

I live in the ghetto. No grass exists, only concrete and asphalt.

My name is Summer Watson and where I live you ain't going to find any grass. No parks, no playgrounds, just run-down, ugly brown buildings the color of mud. No green grass, no blue skies,just rocks that cut your bare feet and clouds, dark as the night sky.

I long to live on the other side. I long to wiggle my toes in the thick green grass, but it ain't going to happen. My family is poor, “too poor to pay attention,” mama always says.

My pop works in the factory. My mama don't work, only pop. The factory is killing pop. Mama begged him to move us down South. I hear them fighting at night through my paper-thin wall.

“Ernestine, we can't just up and move.”

“Joe, the kids need a decent life! They need fresh air and sunshine.”

“We ain't moving!”

I could hear my mama crying. I didn't understand why we couldn't move.

I day dreamed about moving to the South, sunshine and blue skies. Green grass beneath my bare feet was all I could think about.

I heard a loud knock on the door. Mama was asleep with the baby. She always told me not to answer the door. I should have listened.

Mr. Carson, the factory boss stood at the door. “Where' s your mama child?”


“Go wake her up, now!”

I ran into the bedroom as fast as my legs would go. Before I even got to mama, I heard her screaming.

“What's wrong mama?” I heard myself say over and over.

“ Your daddy was in a terrible accident and he was killed.”

I couldn't breathe, I couldn't move.

My pop was dead! Not pop. It was a bad dream. He would come walking through the door any minute.

He didn't of course. The factory gave mama some money for “her trouble.”

Mama couldn't live in the projects anymore. She packed up our clothes and we took a Greyhound to my Aunt Mirtie's in Alabama.

I had longed to see the dark green grass growing in Alabama, but not now, not without Pop, the grass ain't always greener on the other side!

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This article has been read 546 times
Member Comments
Member Date
larry troxell 10/29/09
the grass is always greener on the other side if we are able to share it with the ones we love. nice story.
Dan Blankenship 10/29/09
I realy liked it! I just knew Alabama was going to be in there. My family moved up here from Alabama in the 1950's so my dad could work in the mill. They all moved back, but not me. I still live here in Indiana.

Once again,
nice job!

May God bless and keep you writing!

Dan Blankenship
Lisa Keck10/29/09
Powerful piece. Keep up the good work.
Jennifer Galey10/29/09
I smiled when I saw my home state mentioned! Alabama the beautiful :)
Shellie Bailey10/29/09
Really makes you think, Sometimes to get what you want you will loose something more valuable along the way. Loved it.
Brenda Shipman 10/29/09
Believable dialogue, good simple message, and great take on the color green. Nice job!
Charla Diehl 10/30/09
Emotionally packed story as the MC's dream to escape the ghetto is only realized through tragedy. Believeable writing.
Mark Bell10/31/09
it's not easy to make something longed for into something unwanted. you did a good job.
c clemons11/05/09
A good story but not really the correct take on "the grass is greener on the other side" I understood what you meant however. A little work here and there for flow and the story will work perfectly.