The Gospel Cinderella


As a child, I loved to read fairy tales and to hear Gospel music. Like the Gospel Cinderella and Queen Mother Rhythm, most gospel singers start off telling a sad story, then they segue into a prayerful song. Soon after the solemn notes, the rhythm sweeps the grief from their souls and rushes them into the arms of a healing ecstasy.

To clothe our Gospel Cinderella with a steadfast sense of fairness and faith, I remembered what I loved about fairy tales and gospel music and the people who called themselves "saved"... Cinderella's singing soul is her light in darkness. In our Gospel Cinderella's saddest moments she finds solace and joy in singing gospel. Always she keeps the sense of who she is. Even when those terrible twins try to diminish who she is. She's a girl who uses her power!

Now the African-American derived sound of Gospel music is imitated all over the world. They're singing gospel in Japan! In Europe! In Scandinavian countries! In China! In African nations.

I became a writer by writing stories about ordinary people and the extraordinary stories all around me. Sometimes between breakfast and bedtime I read a bushel of books. Family, friends, and neighbors inspired me. Inspired by the Gospel music in the sanctified church I grew up in, I wrote poems and Gospel songs all the time.

Copyright © Joyce Carol Thomas

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