A Mother’s Love…#385

In the stillness of the midnight hour veiled in

Glory, my mother, stood next to me. She touched

My face where there are always tears. She

Placed her angelic arms around me to take away my

Fears.

What are these thoughts you have, my child? She

Said to me with a mother’s smile. Embrace my

Love, let it take away your sorrows. We are all

Here for only a short while. Be joyous of each

And every tomorrow.

Seek life, not death; things are never as bad as

They seem to cherish your life…follow your dreams.

I opened my eyes, sat up, looking around; this was

Only a dream. It was one I always held dear, love, from

My own mother was never found.

©2022.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

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Searching for a Miracle – The Poem…#378

Searching for a Miracle –

The hours before dawn, and a cold rain pounds into my heart. The grief is fierce as it raises and consumes my spirit, assaulting my senses. Memories emerge from the darkness, becoming one with my soul. In the depths of my wounded courage, I am listing in a sea of sorrow, my life filled with more grief than many can bear. It is the hard cold hour before departing this misery. I search for a miracle. Hope merges with despair. It is my destiny to leave all I have ever loved. 

I am uncertain and afraid. Hope has expired. Sometimes waves of anger and fear hang above me, a cloud circulating over the earth. I do not speak of death. Yet, the elderly where I reside; talk until they see their own grave over the horizon.

Much is written about grief, soft words meant to calm the grieving heart. There will be those that say how lovely these words are, and I doubt if they are all true. Grief is not calm and comforting; the comments do not stop the pain. Words penetrate the brain; shatter the heart.

Most are choked with emotions under the flesh where the heart is sheltered by outward affliction; they close their eyes, hoping to have the scene before they disappear. Grief has no place to hide! The speaker believes the words that enter the ears will comfort despair. It will not.

Unwanted from the Moment of Conception…#377

Old slave quarters – My birth home 1939

  

A passage from the book I am writing, my story.

I believe that from the moment of conception I was searching for a Miracle – I am far past the time when I can hope for a miracle. The hours before dawn, and a cold rain outside the tiny slave quarters pounds into my tiny heart. The grief is fierce as it raises and consumes my spirit, assaulting my senses. Memories emerge from the darkness, becoming one with my soul. I left a place of warmth and goodness to be channeled into a world of heartache and disappointment. In the depths of my wounded courage; I am listing in a sea of sorrow my life filled with more grief than many can bear. It is the hard cold hour before departing this misery. I search for a miracle, hope merges with despair, is my destiny to leave stop the beating of my heart and return home.  I chose this path to learn of such things to take back to my creator, to show and feel human despair

©May.2022.elizabethannjohnson-murphree

Somewhere Between the Trees and Clouds…#376

I have just finished my son’s book “Somewhere Between the Trees and Clouds.” I read the draft; however, when you finish the actual book as I have, you will find yourself considering many aspects of the parents, students, teachers, and school administration and the impact each has on the other throughout the student’s school years. If you are fortunate enough to have a child, always keep in the forefront that it all starts with the parents. I had five children in school simultaneously, from Kindergarten to Twelfth grade. I now have great-grandchildren, and my thoughts are still very often on how today’s children are affected from the moment they wake until they go to bed at night.
Teachers want students to come to class ready to learn, be prepared, focused, and motivated each day.

They want students to enjoy and be participants in the learning process. All this starts with minimum parents’ participation. To answer the question you are asking me, I have the answer. No, I did not have the model student, nor was I ever given the mother of the year award. My children were normal in every way. That included my seeing that each had a decent breakfast or bag lunch in the cafeteria, clean clothes for all seasons, and I tried to make their morning as calm as possible. I knew that if they left with anxiety, depression, or fights with both children and parents, they could not possibly have a good day at school. Teachers want students to be respectful and respect authority and each other. They want them to respect themselves. A respectful and trusting environment allows teachers to maximize learning opportunities. If they go to school with unclean clothes, little or no breakfast, leaving the home atmosphere calm, without fights with parents or each other.

Teachers need parents to support them. They want parents to take them at their word and not question their motives. They want parents to support and reinforce classroom management strategies they have in place. Teachers want parents to be involved with their child’s education. They want parents to take an active role in their children’s education. They want parents who will ensure that all homework gets done and that the child is getting plenty of rest so that they will be alert in class each day. Teachers want parents to value education. They want parents to stress the importance of education from an early age.

Teachers want administrators to have their back in difficult situations. This includes student discipline, disagreements with parents, or confrontation with another faculty member. Teachers want to feel like their administrator(s) will listen to their side and back them if the evidence supports them. Teachers want administrators to provide them with adequate resources. Teachers understand that money can be tight for schools, but there are specific resources that they must have. If a teacher finds a help that they believe will benefit all students, then they expect the administration to find a way to fund it. Teachers want administrators to communicate clear expectations. They want to understand school policy and procedures that affect them. Teachers want administrators to clarify and explain the district’s expectations with issues such as classroom management, student learning, and communication.

Teachers want other teachers to be professional. They do not expect other teachers to talk about them with their students, a parent, or other faculty members. They expect other teachers to value their opinion. They expect other teachers to adhere to the policies of the district. Teachers want other teachers to collaborate. They value other teachers’ opinions. They want them to share best practices and offer advice. They want a strong working relationship with other teachers in which they feel comfortable to share frustrations and success stories.

Teachers want community members to get involved. They want them to volunteer to help in classrooms, read a book to students, or help with a fundraiser. They want them to donate money to projects that they are doing. They want them to offer their services in any capacity that they would be able to help. Now, you are saying so many parents cannot contribute money, but their time is valuable, ask a teacher what you can do to relieve the teacher’s stress.

Your next question will no doubt be; there are bad educators, bad administrators, those that do their job nine – to – five. There are bad apples everywhere and in all professions. We must be avid in being open, reporting fear we may have as a parent, remember everyone has a “boss” that they must answer to. Keep going until you get an answer to your problem. Remember, your child was not born racist; most are not born with no ability to learn; all these things must begin at home. Give your child a good foundation before sending them off to school. We are losing good teachers to non-education positions because of stress and anxiety throughout the system. We need to fight to keep good teachers and weed out the bad. Also, the school system needs a managed format involving teachers, parents, and students. I know you are saying there is one in place; if it is not working, take the time to change it.

What I am suggesting to parents, students, teachers, and administration are not quick fixes. The trouble now is that problems have been slapped with a bandage for years, and soon the problem will go away as the children go away (Graduate or move up in classes). This is not the solution to the problem, and the problems grow bigger each day.

Thank you for reading this post, and comments are welcomed. EAJM 5.3.2022

“Somewhere Between the Trees and Clouds” at Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.com

Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree also located for purchase at: Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.com

The Writer…#370

The Writer

Sleep, never-ending consciousness,

thunder, spray dashing against

the windowpane, in the distance

railroad cars, clang, clang, clang

Sleep, gulls screaming float through

the air, wild and free, diving into

the frothy white waves, living without

care.

 Sleep, ghost trampling upon the mind

and soul, brushing shoulders with

death they surge across time wanting

their story told.

Sleep, wanting the body to relax, flip

right, flip left, the noise of the world

springs from every nerve, wistfully let

there be silence, calmness come back,

come back, come back.

 Sleep, brooding, daggers in the back, rise,

dress, the night will never be soothing.

those words in the head keep moving,

mind in a rage sitting silently staring at

the blank page.

The mind locked in a writer’s block,

the page is blank, time is slowly

moving forward, as the writer stares

at the face of the old wind-up clock.

copyright©2022.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

Books by the author at Amazon.com and Barnes&Noble.com…

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4.13.2022

Somewhere between the trees and clouds…#369

Chuck Murphree – YA Author, Educator, Mental Health Speaker

Book Release April 12, 2022 at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

April 9, 2022…#367

The poem below was created by my thoughts about my grandmother, whom I never knew. The influenza pandemic of 1918–1919 was the most severe influenza outbreak of the 20th century. A virus called influenza type A subtype H1N1 is now known to have been the cause of the extreme mortality of the influenza pandemic of 1918–1919. The disease that caused this devastating pandemic has also been called the Spanish flu.

The influenza pandemic of 1918–19 resulted from such an occurrence and affected populations throughout the world. An influenza virus called influenza type A subtype H1N1 is now known to have been the cause of the extreme mortality of this pandemic, which resulted in an estimated 25 million deaths. However, some researchers have projected that it caused 40–50 million deaths. Many were not reported; they got sick and died without it being reported. During this pandemic, an estimated 25 million persons worldwide died of the so-called Spanish flu, which was first widely reported in Spain but originated in the U.S. state of Kansas.

My grandmother got sick and was dead three days later, on January 11, 1919. It would be 1954 before my daddy would place a tombstone at her grave; I was 15 years old. All those years later my daddy let me pick out the writing on the stone. “Mother is not dead; she is only sleeping.”

Two days after her death, she was buried. My daddy always believed that she was in a coma. He would say that they opened the casket for him to say goodbye to her, and her hand felt warm. He ran from the cemetery and did not stop until he reached the woods surrounding Tarrant City, Alabama. He spent several days roaming in the woods to find a reason for her leaving; she was only 34 years old. 

The tombstone states Emma Hall Evans, but she was never married to but one man, Thomas Johnson, my daddy’s father. His grandmother Jane Hall had asked him not to be placed on her tombstone. My daddy said she was never married to any man. She lived with Thomas Johnson until he found a younger woman. Her maiden name was Overton; she had two children by two separate men that no one ever knew. She called them both Evan’s. He was a womanizer. She was never supposed to go anywhere unescorted after moving back into her mother’s house when Thomas left her. It was always thought that my daddy’s siblings were his half-sister by a white man and his half-brother by a Hispanic man. Yes, she led a colorful life, slipping out of the house at night going to the nightspots in Birmingham, then she slipped back in before daylight. Daddy’s grandmother had him sleep in his mother’s room, thinking she would not leave or that he would tell on her. He loved his mother with all of his being. He never told of her roaming around in Birmingham, Alabama, after her mother went to bed. He would be punished when it was noticeable that she was pregnant. He remained faithful to her until her death.

Few have known this kind of love between a mother and her children. I have been so very fortunate that the love between my children and me has followed in my grandmother’s and daddy’s footsteps. I was married to their father, he is now gone, but the love and trust between my children and myself have not waivered very much throughout these years.

For my grandmother:

Black Feathered Angels  

Old memories, new memories, memories

that 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 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 caresses 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. My

great-grandmother is gone. Everyone

we love soon leaves us. A sad memory,

a heart has been silenced, and a rocker

on a porch stilled. 

Copyright©2022.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

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

Broken Bones and Tainted Blood #363

The screams are silent in your mind
Are silent to the world instant mad insanity
Shattered –
Shattered –
Crushed –
Tainted –

Misery at its worse
Mind open to emotional
Tortured Screams within
Bringing the self mind to
Unthinkable thoughts
Paranoid and unknown
People move about
Unknown unbelievable actions.

The mind searches for away
Run, run, run away
Fear clouds the mind and
The spirit, you – are hostage
In this place of grief, a
Room with no doors.

Something shredding the soul
Your body is moving objects
Make a tornado sphere
Is death cold? I hear and
See s line of trombones plays
Soulful marching into the distance.

The rain red fills the space covers
the floor. Finally, madness has rule
over the mind. I will swim for eternity
In the bloody vexation of my soul.

copyright©2022.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

Somewhere between the trees and clouds…#362

Preorder at: https://www.ten16press.com/product-page/somewhere-between-the-trees-and-clouds-paperback

My son, Chuck Murphree has a new book coming out April 2, 2022, published by ten16pess, somewhere between the trees and clouds is a must read.

Somewhere Between the Trees and Cloudswritten by Chuck Murphree PaperbackYA Fiction - Mental Health - Sexual Abuse - Novels in Verse404 pages

ABOUT THE BOOKI’m damaged goods,Torn apartIn my mind. This is how Dylan describes himself, how teenage boys feel when they are sexually assaulted. Damaged. Yes, it happens to boys too. It isn’t until Dylan meets Audrey that he feels like he's something other than torn and damaged. She too has her darkness. Her assault is recent, from a party where she was taken advantage of, and she is forced to move schools only to face rumors that make her feel like she did something wrong. Together, they help one another navigate their pain and possibly find some healing and grace. Somewhere Between The Trees And Clouds is a story about loss, internal wounds, healing, love, and hope.   


ABOUT THE AUTHORSomewhere Between the Trees and Clouds is Chuck Murphree’s second novel. He lives in Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin, with his wife and spoiled dog. When Chuck isn’t writing, he can be found teaching adolescents, talking to others about mental health, reading, biking, doing yoga, or taking a mindful hike deep in the woods or straight up a mountain. 

Somewhere Between the Trees and Clouds [paperback]

On sale at Amazon and Barnes&Noble April 12, 2022

Back On-Line…#349

Image result for someone typing in a dream

I am back on-line and out of the hospital once again.  I want to let you know about my latest episode with “Multi Myeloma”, bone cancer.  I went into the Oncology center for my “Chemo” treatment Friday, August 20, 2021; the ride was uneventful as was the blood draw.  I was taken to Dr. O, office for a consult before treatment.  It was there that she informed me that my oxygen was low and that she was sending me via ambulance to the ER.  The ride to the ER was the last thing that I rationally remembered.

I remembered one of the ER Doctors saying that I had, a fever, lungs filling up, Pneumonia, for many my age this is a death sentence!  They begin treating the infection immediately, I explained that I needed to go home, that I had been in the hospital for two-half weeks, Rehab for two-weeks, and I had been gone from home for over one-month.  Home only one day and was in Oncology for Chemo, I needed to go home.  I remember IV’s and confusion!   

I opened my eyes and it was still dark outside, a nurse told me it was August 21, 2021, I told her that I thought it was December 21, that my room was decorated for Christmas.  She was very kind explaining that I had entered the hospital on August 20, 2021, it was early morning and there were no decorations in my room.  Thank goodness she stayed with me continuing to explain that I was taking “mega” medications and that may be the reason for the delirium. I “thought” that I got up out of bed making my way outside where there was snow on the ground, a scene out of a movie “Four Season” that I had watched recently.  I tried to remember the names of the other couple go no avail, not even the stage names or the man I was with, Alan Alda.  My thoughts, I was dying and my children had decorated the room making it Christmas for me. 

When morning light began to creep into the room my mind took another turn into the fantasy world of delirium.  Christmas had disappeared, staff came in and out, I believed it was time to “shut up” and take in my surroundings, the only real thing was my son, Chuck.  

With Chuck being there and a telephone call from Carl make me realize that they too had experienced this type of delusion, and Mia a wonderful nurse that stayed with me until he shift had ended.  I continued to weigh in on my surroundings, I was suspicious of many things, and I tried to keep up with the staff, their names, and their positions in the hospital.  I read each IV that hung over my head, the contents and did I know what they were giving me.  My little knowledge of medicine gave me no help, but some of them I understood.  The hospital was not trying to poison me!  Chuck and Mia talk to me, he seem to have a great deal of understanding of what she was telling him, she had hugged me earlier, which was nice.  I did begin to come out of it and by Saturday afternoon, once again had control of my senses.

My delirium is now gone…  I had to spend several days in the hospital.  The combo of medications placed me in that position, which I did not care for and hope to never experience again.  I am back at the computer and tomorrow plan to work on my book.

My plan is to take all of the experiences that I have endured to put in the book that I had started before all of the health problems begin, Severe Anemia, Vitamin D Deficiency, No White Blood Cells, Cancerous Red Blood Cells, Bone Cancer and the latest a Broke Back and a Right Fracture of the Ankle, and on top of all of that Pneumonia.  Yet, here I sit pounding out my latest story for all of you on the old keys.  I and down but do not count me out!

I love each and every one of you and hope to work on a poem to post over the weekend, along with writing as much as possible on the book.  The days are getting shorter and the deadline may be at hand.  I hope that you will find my poetry books interesting and the book about my daughter compelling.

Take care of yourselves and each other.

EAJM

*What are your thoughts on Sirhan Sirhan getting paroled? 

Authors Books at Amazon.com and Barns&Nobel.com