An African-American author and Harlem Renaissance figure, she published the classic short story, Wedding Day, in 1926. Her poems include Street Lamps in Early Spring and Moon Tonight.
She was born in Texas and lived for a time on the Paiute Reservation in Nevada, where her parents taught on behalf of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
She was an editor and columnist for the New York publication, Opportunity.
She wed Albert Jackson in 1927. After the death of her first husband, she married Richard Crosscup, despite a social climate that looked down upon their interracial union.
She was a Harlem Renaissance peer of Langston Hughes.