Tinnie Pettway of Gee’s Bend displays her quilts and a book of poems. “My mama was always writing funny poems, wrote them down on a piece of cardboard. She would read them, making people laugh. I didn’t think her poems had a bearing on me, but one day I started writing. People laughed at my words, too.” Tinnie Pettway still lives in Gee’s Bend, a rural community in Alabama’s Black Belt.