Today I celebrate three of my gifts.

I am creative.
First, the thin, blue painter’s tape is used to mark off a rectangle on the driveway to serve as my canvas. Inside, more tape is added. Some slanted to the left. Some slanted to the right. Then, it is my turn! I fill in each defined untaped space. The top right becomes pink. The bottom left, green. Because I offer such variety, no two adjoining spaces are the same shade. Finally, the tape is removed and I remain. A masterpiece!
I am creative.

I am educational.
“It’s time for school. Let’s head outside,” the older one said.
“Hurrah,” the younger one said as I am grabbed.
“Number 1: The -at family. Ready, set, go!” said the older one.
I am used by the younger one to form c-a-t first on the driveway. Then below it h-a-t, f-a-t, p-a-t.
“Time,” shouts the older one. “Number 2: The -ed family. Ready, set, go!”
Soon Number 10 is complete and I have filled the driveway. Then the young one say, “Find a word that starts with h and rhymes with cat?” and the older one walked all around my markings. Finally, I feel her flip-flops squish down on my h-a-t. For another 30 minutes, I help them learn.
I am educational.

I am activist.
First, I form just 3 letters – BLM.
Then a phrase, JUSTICE 4 ALL, big and bold.
Then a quote, ““There comes a time when silence is betrayal.” 
I am added, with assistance by a 14-year old, to her private driveway and to the sidewalk in front of her house and then I spill into the public street.
Later, I feel the cold water, hitting me fast and hard and rough.
I swirl and lift and roll. First, into the gutter and then I’m washed completely away into the sewer. Yet, friends of the 14-year old arrive with more of me in hand. I add more letters, more phrases, more quotes.
My favorite is “Wash it….we will do it again.”
I am activist.


NOTE: This slice was inspired by news that happened Friday, June 19, 2020 (Juneteenth) in my neighborhood and connected to a student in my school district. If you want to read more about it, I placed news articles on this padlet. Feel free to leave a reflection.

I was also inspired by Cindy ( who often writes using personification. I’m still a novice at this strategy but I reread some of her slices to help me get started!

I also looked at The Day The Crayon’s Quit as a mentor text.

9 thoughts on “Chalk

  1. jumpofffindwings says:

    For a “novice,” you definitely get high marks—ones that can’t be erased by a cold water bath. This Slice also does a great job of organization, of a strategy Jim Burke recommends, “I Am” then specific anecdotes with proof. I love this and will try the technique. I need to be more adventurous! You’ve inspired (and the topic you’ve chosen? I have only respect for that.)


  2. Fran McCrackin says:

    The power of humble chalk!
    The mood really changes as we feel pounded and lifted by that harsh water.
    I love the progression here, and the photo at the end. Thanks, also, for including the background info so any reader (not local) can hear the story.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. mschiubookawrites says:

    I love the imagery in your last paragraph, about the water washing the chalk away, but because it is activist, it is not fazed by this obstacle or thwarted from continued action. Well done, Sally. So many layers of meaning packed in this slice!

    Thank you also for spurring me to action. Putting pen to paper again today, thanks to YOU!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. MegMcCormick says:

    Your creativity in this post is so awesome and mentor-text worthy. I also was struck by the imagery of the cold water and “jumped” at the description of it!! Thank you for this slice!

    Liked by 1 person

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