Essay about A Heart as Dark as Sin

1411 Words 6 Pages
Mistress Ross was the most pious woman in the whole South. Why, just look how well she and her husband treated their slaves! What good Christians, ladies said at meetings. She was a modest woman— her husband had a plantation of respectable size with 50 slaves but she still wasn’t above donating generously to the Church. She felt she had to serve the Lord by uplifting the poor, unenlightened souls of her slaves and teach them the holy path. Master Ross shook his head at his wife, for everyone knew that you give a slave one inch and they suddenly act like they own the farm.

I had light skin, so she took pity on me and took me inside the house when I was three. It was fine, mostly; I had good food, clothes, education, and a place to
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This wasn’t what I wanted. I tasted heavenly, delicious knowledge, and now I wanted more. Dorothy sensed this as she always sensed people She told me when she sat with me at dinner what her tutor taught her that day.

We continued like this, always hiding whenever the grownups came downstairs. We made sure to be as silent as snowflakes. One day, however, I clumsily dropped a book on the floor. Its thud echoed in the utter silence, and even more silently Mistress glided down the stairs.

“What is that awful noise?” she muttered, half-asleep and registering what she saw, her eyes popped open. “Dorothy! What are you doing up this late?” She glanced at the fallen book. “You’re teaching him? You’re teaching him? He’s a dirty slave, you hear? You know what’ll he’ll do with that knowledge? He’ll decide he’s so high and mighty he’ll slit our throats in our sleep! Never mind that we made them Christians. Never mind that they’re civilized— eat the fruit of knowledge and become a savage. All he needs to know is to read the Bible and nothing else or he’ll forget his duty to the Lord.”

Dorothy glanced at me nervously. I had never seen Mistress like this. She was apoplectic; her ivory face a burning red and her eyes with a maniacal glint. I thought she just might lose it and beat Dorothy to death. Tears streamed down Dorothy’s face as she looked at me apologetically.

“Mother, I didn’t want

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