Poet Maya Angelo once wrote


“Years ago I saw some children jumping hopscotch in Harlem. And then later, I was in Stockholm taking a course in cinematography, and I saw some Swedish children skipping hopscotch—I think it’s called “hoppa hage” there. And I thought, “Hmmm, those kids at home, they have a little more rhythm and they think different thoughts.” So I went back to watch the children in Harlem to get their rhythm, and then I began to write this poem:


         “Harlem Hopscotch”

One foot down, then hop! It’s hot.

   Good things for the ones that’s got.

Another jump, now to the left.

   Everybody for hisself.


In the air, now both feet down.

   Since you black, don’t stick around.

Food is gone, the rent is due,

   Curse and cry and then jump two.


All the people out of work,

   Hold for three, then twist and jerk.

Cross the line, they count you out.

   That’s what hopping’s all about.


Both feet flat, the game is done.

They think I lost. I think I won.



I love Maya Angelo’s use of words that integrate concepts. She always seems to catch the essence of the topic and bring it to life.




And, that is something I believe culturally American. My country, in my generation (Vietnam Era) were instilled with the idea—– WE CAN


So many of us HOPSCOTCHED through life trying to change

the old fashioned CANNOT generations of our past. Those that believed and were biased against age, gender, color, and cultural difference.


I, we, were civil rights era children.  And me for one chose to break with the past and go out and do…….


I can the belief that has carried me through three decades of traveling and working abroad. 


Today’s picture conjures up in my mind the image of the children of the world, the ones Maya Angelo knows………..


Colorful people, 

Can do………..

‘HERS and HIMS’ HOPSCOTCHING” the world.



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