Life…#332

Life

With each mornings shaft of light 
I begin my conflict of words, sometimes 
I let the tears fall and sadness engulfs 
me.  Sometimes I smile!  I tell myself to 
“hush”; it is too late my soul dies further 
toward the end as time goes on.
Sometimes I am weak, my heart locked 
away too long?  Thoughts are concealed, 
feared, live and move forward out of blame.  
The heart beats on as the voices in my head 
feed from the heart with each beat.  My words 
continue quarreling with my mind.
Has life been no more that random destiny’s?  
How lighthearted my life has been, lies, 
lies to keep the outside world in dumbness.  
Daily I drink from the cup of dissension, 
and erratic thoughts, words, look into my soul, 
despite pending doom I float thoughtless in 
the river of my life with my words clinging 
to my throat like gnarled fingers.     
Buried in the cesspools gathering on the 
shore the river flows with ambiguity.  Life is 
eternally blind!  My words flow from within, 
buried in knowledge, found by fire.  The 
mystery of my heart beats, words line by line. 
 Am   I  worthless.  Hour after hour the 
words demand power, read what pulses 
through my veins.
Life flows, arrives and moves on, from 
morning glow to evening sunset; it winds 
through the valley’s filling with expression.  
The words, a story from the hours past, they 
rise from within to the page swirling in the 
cesspool at the river’s edge.  They cannot move
 on into the river of life, they must remain as 
the past.  I wait for the morning shaft of light
 and life.      

©2021.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

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Black Feathered Angels…#323

Black Feathered Angels

Old memories, new memories,

memories last for a lifetime.    

Unstinted buried deep hidden

from the surface of the mind. 

As I sit on steps where paint is

peeling and rotting I have but

one thought.  Childhood is dead.

Some memories refuse to stay

buried, I see a small country

church, a chorus of crows; the

splashing sounds of a brook

running through Birch trees.

The wind caressing the

colossal row of Oaks in the

nearby field.

Death, departing the small

weathered house of worship,

a wagon pulled by six black

horses, and a manifestation

of black feathered angels.  A

sad memory, a heart has been

silenced, and a rocker on a

porch stilled.  Everyone we

love soon leaves us. 

©2021.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

Books by Author at Amazon.com and Barnes&Noble.com:

1.            Fragments of Time

2.            A Passage into Madness

3.            Asterial Thoughts

4.            A Sachet of Poetry

5.            Rutted Roads

6.            Rhythm Rhyme and Thoughts

7.            Reflections of Poetry

8.            Beyond the Voices

9.            Honeysuckle Memories

10.          Echoing Images from the Soul

11.          A Journey into the Soul

Women’s History Month and Aging…#317

What is it to Grow Old?

Image result for growing old images

As many of you know, I have been fighting a problem that my doctors cannot diagnose; they sent me home after every test known to man or woman.  At the beginning I was walking about six miles a day; at the end of the hospital stay, I was walking with assistance walker, now a cane.  The weakness holds to me like a leach.  After a hospital stay, I have been undergoing therapy at home; I am no better today than my first day home.

This weakness is interfering in my life!  Therapy takes up most of my days; no less than four hours a day, with little progress.  I take care of the needs of my new puppy and myself, there is no energy for anything else.  Simple household chores can be monumental; as are the self care needs.  The challenge that I face daily is the need to work on my writing and painting projects.  That time is limited the reason, no energy which brings me to what I plan to discuss in this post, women and depression.  The Covid affects older adults, twice as many women over men experience depression.  Nonetheless, geriatric depression added onto medical conditions and certain disabilities can be life threatening.  Depression can be misdiagnosis, as it mimics normal age related issues.

Depression in the older adults can reduce their quality of life, and it increases risk of suicide.  There is no single cause of depression in any age group. Some research indicates that there could be a genetic link to the disease. However, biological, social, and psychological factors all play a role in depression in older adults.

If you’re experiencing depressive symptoms and suicidal thoughts, it’s important to get help. With the right interventions, depression is treatable, and suicide is preventable.  Learn to recognize the symptoms’ of depression; if you have an elderly relative talk to them about the possibility of being depressed.

I myself suffer from depression, I have always felt that creative people are all depressed in some way; it derives from our need to create, artist, writers.  My symptoms were lack of interest, unable to sleep, feelings of hopelessness, a strange sadness; feelings of no quality of life.

I share t his with you as there may be others of all ages that are living under a dark cloud of depression.  Try to understand your feelings and discuss it with your physician, and always remember that you are not alone.

Below is a piece  that I have written/created  during these dark days, it helps to continue to create.  I am fine; each day brings renewed hope for a long and bright future.

Image result for growing old images

Watching the body lose its shape, the eyes no longer sparkle, now small orbs in a wrinkled face.  Strength disappears, limbs grow stiff, and every function less accurate and every fiber of  being frail and overwrought with life. Life is not what in our youth we dreamed it would be!  The aging was not to be mellow and soft as the sunsets glow, these golden day’s  decline with a hurried speed.  To see the world from a pinnacle with creative eyes, a heart deeply moved.  Yet we mourn to feel and see the past, the years that are gone forever. Being old is to spend long days not once believing that we were ever young.  Confined in the cold prison of living day to day with weary pain. It is to suffer, being only half of what we use to be; feeble are many who are hidden away.  Remembrance gone, no emotion, no life. This is the last stage of life, frozen within ourselves, soon to be an empty ghost; whom do we blame? We blame no one, no regrets, being old is a privilege. 

©2021.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

Bangles and Colorful Cloth for Ma…#316

Image result for Autumn Cemetery

Bangles and Colorful Cloth for Ma…

“Repost – Dedicated to my Great-Grandmother”

When I was born, you were a young ninety-years old,

your hair pulled tight at the nap of your neck, still

black and bold.  At night, you let it down to braid before

you went to bed; it almost fell to the floor; at first I would

watch in silence from a crack in the door. 

The night you caught me I was six, you called me into the

room…asking that I bring you a single broomstick. 

I quickly plucked it from mother’s broom, and rushed

back into the dimly lamp lit room.  You showed me how to

break it into small pieces; when I looked bewildered your smile

showed all of your dark wrinkles and creases. 

It was then that my eyes opened wide as you put the stick right

through the lob of your ears, its magic I thought; but this is my

Great-grandmother I have nothing to fear.  As a child, I did not

realize that there was a hole, because when I would touch the

bangles on her ears, she would quickly scold.

Just like the time when I tried to sneak a peek at her button up

shoes by raising the hem of her long dress, she did not have on

shoes, there were moccasins on those tiny feet…who would have

guessed.  Yes, I was a child without a care, and I spent many

hours sitting at the foot of her old rocking chair.

I never tire of the stories she would tell, sometimes we cried together

and now I can say, as a child she lived in a white man’s world, she

called it “hell”.  Her parents had walked on the “Trail of Tears”, proud

and strong, with every step wondering where they had gone wrong.

She help raise me and she taught me “The Way”.  When her mind begins

to wander in those later years, I was sad when she would tell her stories

that she only remembered the bad.  This grand old lady dressed in bangles

and cloths of many colors, long braids and black hair; a great-grandmother

like no other.

She died a few days before her birthday; she would have been one-hundred

and five.  My daddy said, Ma as we called her would have scolded you saying

 don’t you ever cry.  I was fifteen-year old and the world was bright and

colorful with the artwork of fall, a befitting day to bury a  beautiful and

proud Chickasaw. 

[Repost]

Copyright©2012.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

A Dictator in the making…#308

The sights of Donald Trump, he will run in 2024, he will win; God help America.

I pray that I am wrong about Trump getting stronger, winning in 2020; he will truly divide America and there will be blood running in the streets of every decent town and city. I have deemed him an evil man for four-years; I am believe people are afraid of his evil and what he can do to them. Look above and you will see the face of a “dictator”.

So, first, I am neither a Republican nor a Democrat; I voted for the best man to do the job.  Donald Trump has maybe done a few things, but, they are not enough to cover up his making fun of women and disabled people.  I am a woman and had a disabled child; he has never been my favorite from the beginning.  Nevertheless, if this country voting Biden into office believes that he is truly president, he would be wrong.  Donald Trump is running the Republican Party, along with his Proud Boys, White Extremist, and Red Neck followers. These are all “domestic terrorist”; he will keep them loyal until his next election in 2024.  The Republican’s have turned coat on what they were saying during Trump’s last days.  Once he was out of office, and the possibility of no impeachment, they are once again all for Trump.

  Mitch McConnell, who stated Trump instigated the terrorist attack on the Capital, said Trump needed to be accountable for his crimes, now; no, he is a traitor too.  He made a famous “Mob was fed lies” speech, I said then as usual for the past 40 years McConnell has run the government.  Check your history on him, he has always lied.  Now, most Republicans senators have voted to dismiss the impeachment article against Trump.  Why, because he is no longer in office.  Republicans and Democrats both hastily ted, they all begin to lose their nerve, just as they always have with Trump. 

This is why they did not push the issue before he left, including many democrats who do not have the backbone to say they were for Trump.  Did Trump have them paid off, who will ever know; he has dished out favors like most of us “breathe”, constantly.  He pardoned many “friends”, criminal friends.  There was talk that he would pardon himself and his family, if you have not done a crime, why do you need to be pardoned?  The current talk is that he has done so before leaving the WH, in secret!  Mitch McConnell decided that it was better to keep the Republican Party than to “DEFEND AMERICAN DEMOCRACY”.

Trump wanted to be a “DICTATOR”; he thought that dividing the country would be his best chance.  “IF YOU PICK A FIGHT WITH TRUMP AND BACK DOWN”, he owns you.  It does not matter that he is out of office, “TRUMP NOW OWNS MITCH MCCONNELL AND THE REPUBLICAN PARTY”. 

But, if you pick a fight with Donald Trump and then back down, he will own you. Even though he is out of office, Trump owns Mitch McConnell and the Republican Party.  So, let’s not forget McCarthy, he should have ignored Trump’s whining; instead he ran to the first plane to Florida and kissed “Ass”.  He had been all for impeachment, oh my, fear will make one do anything.  Trump has issued a statement, “President Trump’s popularity has never been stronger”, and he believes he is still president.

The {New York Times and Politico} reported that “Three weeks ago, Donald Trump was radioactive, even in the top quarters of his own party. Now, those same Republicans are convinced they can’t live without the energy he gives off, even if it proves toxic.”

The Associated Press reported overnight, “Republicans appear to be warming toward Trump, fully aware that his supporters are poised to punish anyone who displays disloyalty. With that in mind, party leaders are working to keep Trump in the fold as they focus on retaking the House and Senate in 2022.”

Republicans are not saying goodbye to Trump; they are placing him first.  Republicans are clinging to failure.   They are clinging to the hope that Trump’s donor base will still help finance Republican campaigns in the 2022 midterms.

I leave you with the Liz Cheney, and Don Jr., going to a rally to hopefully ousts her in the upcoming elections.  Does this tell you that Trump is still very much in control of the direction this country is going?  He still wants to be the “Dictator” of America.  Is this what Americans want, no, but it is going to be an uphill battle to rid the county of all “TRUMP’S”.

EAJM

Aunt Francis…#307

Author’s Note:  This is the true story of Aunt Francis, an old colored lady who came to live at the farm where we lived in 1944.  She was respected and loved by everyone who met her; except for my mother and sister.

Aunt Francis

Aunt Francis as she told me to call her lived on this earth over 100 years.  Aunt France born in 1865 was the daughter of slaves.  She thought herself to be watched over by the Angels, her mother and father were never sold; they were still together at the end of the War.  They died and were buried on the same plantation where they were born.

Her birth name was Sarah Francis Belew; she came into my life when I was five – years – old; she was seventy nine.  My daddy needed someone to watch over me while he was in the cotton fields; and my great-grandmother was getting on in age, ninety-five.  My mother worked in town and she would come home most times after we were all in bed and she would be gone before most of us got up.  She asks to be called Aunt Francis.  I realize when I became older that calling her that could be placed in the racist category.  However, in those days my daddy who was discriminated against himself; nor I knew much about being racist.  My mother and sister on the other hand I doubt thought much about being racist, with my mother it was more hate than anything else; and my sister followed in her footsteps.  

Aunt Francis was because of several conditions.  Daddy went to the cotton gin in Priceville, Alabama, pulling a trailer of freshly picked cotton with his tractor.  When he returns in the trailer, where the cotton once lay was Aunt Francis sitting in her big rocking chair, it would be safely to say that I wondered how her legs could carry this gigantic woman; but there she was an indigo blue dress with pink flowers scattered across the material.  Covering the dress was a white bib apron that like the dress reached to the top of her shoes.  Beside her a huge trunk which held all of her worldly belongings.  

It was a Monday, mothers off day from the beauty shop.  A “fight” quickly develops when mother ran to the back porch of our farmhouse wanting to know why “the old colored woman was there”.  She knew Aunt Francis, but act as if she were a total stranger.

 Everyone in Morgan County knew that she live in a lean-to in the back of the general store.  If one does not know what a “lean-to” is, it is a three-sided building place against another building, no windows, and one door in, one door out. She lived there with her son Gus.  It was her only child and the story was that she was raped b a white man, the results being Gus.  She was too old to work the fields and no one wanted her for a maid or cook.  So, she and Gus lived behind the store.  He worked for the store at night cleaning it for a place to live and groceries.  He had been accused of stealing money and placed in jail with a one-year sentence.  The owner of the Priceville General Store put Aunt Francis out on the edge of the road, her rocker and chest.  It was said that he had someone to tear down the lean-to and burn it along with the beds, table and chairs.  

We had a little one room shack across from our house, it had a small pot belly stove and a table and chairs, and bed.  I help as much as I could and we cleaned up the shack and moved her in, daddy cut wood for the stove and brought her canned fruits and vegetables out of mother’s pantry, to tell her when she wanted meat he would bring it from the smokehouse.  He also told her that I would bring her potatoes from the garden. Fresh milk and water from the spring house.  She was all set up before the sun set that day.

Mother did not want her there, but took advantage of it by saying she could clean, wash and cook for the family.  Daddy looked at her saying, that she was not brought there to do any more than help watch me and my grand-mother.  My mother was very unhappy with the situation.  Now she had two to “put up” with. 

She disliked Ma my daddy’s grandmother living with us, and now an old colored woman.  Daddy’s grandmother had raised him when his mother died of the Spanish Flu.  She was a full-blooded Native American, Chickasaw.  Daddy sometimes would say to me, “You know that your mama married beneath her upbringing”, I would be much older before I understood the inference of what he said.  I also felt bad for my mother she had made the mistake of marrying one of the most handsome men in Alabama.  Dark, strong, a beautiful Chickasaw man.  Well it was not the kindness and love caused her to marry him.  My guess is that when my sister was born eight months after she med him, that was the answer.  Of course, it always set my sister off into a tantrum when I would say that they had to get married.  When I was born, my mother did not want another child.  She gave me to my daddy’s half-sister, she kept me until I was three – years- old; when I could almost take care of myself daddy wanted me home.   I had some of the most wonderful care givers in the world, my daddy, Ma (my great-grandmother) and Aunt Francis.

Therefore, I grew up learning how to act, live and survive; these lessons came from Ma and Aunt Francis.  I was a young woman when I lost both of them.  Ma along with my daddy had given me full knowledge of “The Ways” of their people, the nobility and strength.  Aunt Francis gave me the meaning of life, to be alive and how to survive.  She also, gave me the graciousness, and how a young woman should act.  I doubt that I have lived up to their expectations of me, I have tried.

When I returned to Alabama to attend the funeral of Aunt Francis, it had to be one of the darkest days in my life.  My daddy had taken care of her until the day she died.  She moved into town when daddy left the farm when I was twelve- years – old, he found her a house and paid her rent.  He gave her spending money and brought groceries to her weekly, from a list she prepared for him.  My heart aches at the thought of how much she meant to us.  In many ways I miss Aunt Francis more than I do my own mother.  She raised me gave me the love I did not get at home.

Later in life I painted a picture of Aunt Francis in Acrylics, I wanted her to be young and alive.  I have the picture today.  Then much later I begin to write poetry, naturally the piece created “Another Spring for Aunt Francis” was for her.  I have to smile at remembering her huge body walking across the creaky boards of the old tarpaper shack.  The long dress covered with a starched white apron.  Most of all I remember her hugs and kisses, she loved me and I loved, still love her.

Oh yes, the racism, being raised by Native American daddy, my Aunt (daddy’s sister), a great-grandmother and Aunt Francis, the daughter of slaves.  I went into life with a different perspective than that of my mother and sister, and all of my mother’s people.  I myself was discriminated against because I was the daughter of a poor Chickasaw farmer.

The poem below was created for my Aunt Francis…

Another spring for Aunt Francis

Her knees bend forward away from the worn out rocker, her legs getting their bearings while she made a puckered brow while looking out the window at the garden.   Everything dies she thought; soon the fragrance of spring will be gone. 

She narrows her eyes looking into the hedgerow at the end of her flowerbed to see if the sparrow hawks have returned, slowly she turns keeping contact with the old chair, holding onto its arms.  After one-hundred listless summers, her soul still feeds on emotions of the stillness of the sweet-scented honeysuckle growing around her front porch. 

Holding her breath she falls back into the chair, it shudders under her weight. She knows not to take her being able to stand for granted.  Closing her eyes to rest, bible in hand, and her thoughts were none other than she could get back up another time, another spring.  Maybe!



©2012.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

Author’s book at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.com

©2021.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

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Elizabeth Ann Johnson Murphree | Barnes & Noble® (barnesandnoble.com)

A Rotting America…#251

Casualties of the Times

Begging for food, living on the streets, no jobs to be found, families no longer sound.  Government talks end up in contradictions, poverty is the prediction.  

The homeless cannot sleep during winter’s cold nights, they gather around a burning barrel, men, women and children, forgotten, shattered and despised; in the distance a baby cries. 

The spirit freezes, fruit of labors rot, life squeezes and struggles persist, bad luck smothering heart and soul, hope ceases to exist. 

Changing winds turn into storms, will the world grow wiser, or will it be humbled and beaten back into servility? 

Trust departed, a cardboard box in the streets is where the homeless make their beds, hope disappears and the future appears dead.

2014©elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

Books by Author: Amazon.com and Barnes&Nobel.com

(In USA and 12 countries abroad)

Flying with Broken Wings: The Life Story of Charlotte Jean Murphree: Johnson-Murphree, Elizabeth Ann: 9781547051328: Amazon.com: Books

Fragments of Time: Bits and Pieces of the Time I have lived in?: Johnson-Murphree, Elizabeth Ann: 9781981472147: Amazon.com: Books

Rhythm Rhyme and Thoughts: A decade of poetry: Johnson-Murphree, Elizabeth Ann: 9781723433054: Amazon.com: Books

A Sachet of Poetry: Adoration Aspirations Anger Asylums: Johnson-Murphree, Ann: 9781500483357: Amazon.com: Books

Reflections of Poetry: Johnson-Murphree, Ann: 9781500168643: Amazon.com: Books

Beyond the Voices: Johnson-Murphree, Ann: 9781500426705: Amazon.com: Books

Honeysuckle Memories: Johnson-murphree, Ann: 9781500290702: Amazon.com: Books

Echoing Images from the Soul: A Journey into the Soul: Johnson-Murphree, Ann: 9781500366810: Amazon.com: Books

Asterial Thoughts: A Journey into a Life, Thought and Fear: Johnson-Murphree, Ann: 9781540862358: Amazon.com: Books

Rutted Roads: A Collections of Poems: Johnson-Murphree, Ann: 9781532909368: Amazon.com: Books

A Passage into Madness: A State of Frenzied Activity: Johnson-Murphree, Elizabeth Ann: 9781688948990: Amazon.com: Books

Flying with Broken Wings…#247

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=elizabeth+ann+johnson-

Flying with Broken Wings

Author Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree books at: Amazon.com and Barnes&Noble.com

Flying with Broken Wings is about the life of Charlotte Jean Murphree. Charlotte was not a famous person, in fact, not too many people knew her, but those that did knew there were many facets to her life. The book tells of fifty-two-years of daily testing of her will to carry on and the misfortune she faced. As a baby and young girl she was made fun of and bullied by schoolchildren, her progress was slow but she never gave up the fight to overcome her disabilities. As an adult, she fought physical disability of Cerebral Palsy, living with Bipolar, Depression and Schizophrenia disorders. She lived not only with these disabilities, she endured the “Voices” that lived within her for over thirty years. This book is about the beginning, the middle and the end of her life.

Books by Author at Amazon.com and Barnes&Noble.com:

Fragments of Time

A Passage into Madness

Asterial Thoughts

A Sachet of Poetry

Rutted Roads

Rhythm Rhyme and Thoughts

Reflections of Poetry

Beyond the Voices

Honeysuckle Memories

Echoing Images from the Soul

A Journey into the Soul

©2020.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

Book(s) Promotion…#235

Author Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree books at: Amazon.com and Barnes&Noble.com

Flying with Broken Wings is about the life of Charlotte Jean Murphree. Charlotte was not a famous person, in fact, not too many people knew her, but those that did knew there were many facets to her life. The book tells of fifty-two-years of daily testing of her will to carry on and the misfortune she faced. As a baby and young girl she was made fun of by schoolchildren, her progress was slow but she never gave up the fight to overcome her disabilities. As an adult, she fought Cerebral Palsy, Living with Bipolar, Depression, and Schizophrenia disorders. Charlotte lived not only with herself but she endured the “Voices” that lived within her for over thirty years. This book is about her beginning, her middle, and the end of her life.

Author Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree books at: Amazon.com and Barnes&Noble.com

Fragments of Time

A Passage into Madness

Asterial Thoughts

A Sachet of Poetry

Adoration Aspirations Anger Asylums

Rutted Roads

A Collections of Poems

Rhythm Rhyme and Thoughts

A Decade of Poetry

Reflections of Poetry

Beyond the Voices

Honeysuckle Memories

Echoing Images from the Soul

A Journey into the Soul

Writers Page: https://www.facebook.com/Elizabeth-Ann-Murphree-Writer-111707974010781

Poetry-Waiting for the End…#234

Living under both fugitive and gracious light, living within walls that no longer make a home.  Living with assumptions in a world that scorns.  One cannot demand love; it leaves the seeker tired and alone. The heart is no longer inspired by life; it is dead it is made of stone.

Thirst for creativity, hours to feel un-whole, feeble, no power no control.   Troubled with no rest, walking upon the fallow ground, the fields like deserts, barren no heart no soul.  Youth has gone; strength is gone, one’s foremost self-lost in the past, haunted by what went before.

No music, not even the sound from a rustic flute.  The clouds of an obsessed storm in the sky, it groans with sadness.  Visions clear, to be mute would be golden.   No cares, wandering, nomadic, living from place, to place, another plane, the way is lost. Heart-weary, harsh, a dwelling a void, silence. 

Fear and fatigue consume, will the body die. Evidence is in the stillness of a stone heart, it has grown weary and cold.  The heart beats faster and faster, like a runaway train, sweeping through the soul.  The deep cut into the soul cannot heal. The night-wind blows through a whisper of silver hair, soon it will be dawn.  The night passed slowly. 

Another day under the leafless tree, dew lays upon the body, watching the Robin looking beneath for a worm.  Fall is here and the Robin will go south, soon a cold and frothy sea of white will cover the ground.  Death is welcomed, emptiness, the trembling are now all stilled; time is winding to a close.  Ashes will soon lay upon an icy shore, waiting for the melting ice to float them away.   

2020©elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

Flying with Broken Wings is about the life of Charlotte Jean Murphree. Charlotte was not a famous person, in fact, not too many people knew her, but those that did knew there were many facets to her life. the book tells of fifty-two-years of daily testing of her will to carry on and the misfortune she faced. As a baby and young girl she was made fun of by schoolchildren, her progress was slow but she never gave up the fight to overcome her disabilities. As an adult, she fought Cerebral Palsy, Living with Bipolar, Depression and Schizophrenia disorders. Charlotte lived not only with herself but she endured the “Voices” that lived within her for over thirty years. This book is about her beginning, her middle and the end of her life.