Choices – A 100 Word Story

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Choices

A roar of thunder melds with a coming storm, Tom Thornton’s heart is stone; he knows that because he feels nothing.  His wife’s veins once flowed with a passionate fire; now the crimson liquid spread across the floor.  Doors locked, a decision had to be made and quickly.  His life also ended when he would not let Sarah leave.  His heart will never soften; he will never feel the heat of Sarah’s fire again.  The police and ambulance sirens filter into the house.  He sat on the bed asking, “God, will I go to Heaven if I choose to die”?

 

 

©2016.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

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On a Blue Bird Day

It is spring, warm breezes float through magnolia trees.  A gracious woman of the South rises from past memories; her thoughts behind the ice blue eyes. She sits on the bank of a pebbly brook under a Blue Bird sky, the scent of lilac rises from her starched dress.  She dips her fingers slowly into the cool water; she is old and life has passed her by, and the depths of her truth never known.  In her secret place of selfishness her hate for an unwanted child; she stops to ponder her own question; does she deserve the name “Mother”.

 

©2016.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

 

 

Happy Father’s Day Daddy…

30. Women in cottonfield

The painting is from an acrylic and watercolor I did in 2012,  it is one of my favorites as its subjects are from the memory of my childhood; of a place that I loved, and as a child understood the hardships of the times.  My daddy passed away in 1977, he was a good man; he was a Native American farming and living in Northern Alabama.  He farmed almost 500 acres of cotton as a “sharecropper” he made $80 a month and we lived in a tarpaper shack on a small patch of green next to a natural spring that ran into a small creek.  He was the parent who raised me and I would ride on cool mornings to the field in the back of a wagon pulled by two old mules.  At the end of the day I nestled in that same wagon on a soft bed of cotton for the trip home.  My hopes are that he is somewhere beyond the veil of life sitting on the back of a wagon with the sweet smell of smoke from his pipe circling his head as he visits with those he loved and respected.  I wrote the poem below as a tribute to him drawn on the memories of those day.

“A  tribute to Daddy”

 

The Chickasaw Farmer

Rickety old man stood on the cotton wagon a tin of yellow salve in his hand.

Rickety Old Wagon

Rickety Old Man

A hot southern sun hides behind the willows on muddy Flint Creek, cotton pickers sweat falling on parched lips taste like salty brine while they wait for the Old man to call “quitting time”.

Rickety Old Wagon

Rickety Old Man

Young, old, children, women and men bloody fingers cut by the barbs of the cotton boll dig into the old yellow salve tin.

Rickety Old Wagon

Rickety Old Man

Tar bottom sacks emptied of the soft white gold weary feet follow two old sway back mules down a rutted road.

Rickety Old Wagon

Rickety Old Man

Crimson clouds from wagon wheels whirl around tired bodies and drained minds; feels like pickers were working in the cotton fields since the beginning of time.

Rickety Old Wagon

Rickety Old Man

Mules stop at the fork of the road as the cotton pickers walked into the dark of the night the Old man’s heart filled with appreciation, because he is just an old Chickasaw farmer trying to survive inside a “White Nation”.

Rickety Old Wagon

Rickety Old Man

©2015.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

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#9391…A 100 Word Story

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#9391

It was July 1915 and Annabelle stared out the window.  Beyond the bars lay the tombstones covered with dead leaves and vine, each inscribes with nothing but a number; the records might have given the names of those beneath the red southern soil.

She knew that there were no tomorrows.  A marriage of happiness ended with a disobedient act against her husband.  It was his right to put her in an asylum for the insane and the disobedient.  Yesterday’s promises were over; the “Consumption” as they called it would soon take her life.  The small 12X12 stone would read “#9391”.

 

©2016.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

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Willa – A 100 Word Story

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Willa

Morning, sunbeams seeping through the windowpane like frost from winters frozen ground.    The breeze bathes Willa Sandusky with the scent of lilacs that are growing lavishly; a plum dusk sky lingers in the west.    Combing her snow-white hair, she takes the well-worn path down the hillside toward the sea.   Again, at dusk, Willa washed the dried sand from her feet, climbed in bed beneath old quilts and closed her eyes.  She knew the time had come, her soul left its earthly body and floated over silver sands and emerald seas; one-hundred year old Willa knew that she was going home.

 

 

©2016.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

 

 

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A Sheepherder’s Life – A 100 Word Short Stor

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A Sheepherder’s Life

On a dusky hillside, the sheepherders and dogs are tired.   No bleating comes from the sheep all is at rest.  The sheepherder’s whisper of the day and what will come tomorrow.  They talk of keeping the wolves away on this warm summer night.  They watch the sparks from their fire ascend into the purple night.  Tomorrow they will have to move to a new meadow or hillside, the grass where they lay is only roots.  They smoke their pipes and talk of gypsy-lore, the sheep, the dogs and herding, a gift from God.  This was their father’s life, their life.

 

 

©2016.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

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Salty Water – A 100 Word Story

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Salty Water

Jenny’s and Jim’s hearts felt ripped from their chest as their baby, their only child lay unmoving; a blue tint already replacing soft pink skin still covered with sand from the beach.   Why were they not watching her? When the ambulance drove away, they ran to their car driving away from the tiny blue and white cottage by the Gulf. As their car went through the guardrails, they held each other tightly and smiled while the cool salty water flowed through broken windows. Both called out in the darkness; “Sandy we’re coming”. The single headstone read, “HERE LIES THREE HEARTS”.

 

©2016.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree  thBPHSKA15

 

Words…

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Words, words, words, black, brown red, words for which my tears have shed.  It is said that the living word speaks truth, yet one must die to have real proof.

Birth to death we are taught from the Holy text, we will not truly live until sacrifice has been met.  The sky will open the “Just” will fly away, the “Wicked” given a second chance must stay.

Words, are they truth or a means for the pious to lie, and for the answer are you willing to die?  I want to believe, to hope, to live life to its fullest here on earth, and I choose to continue to search.

To taste the lush berries down in the blackberry thicket, to smell the wild rose on the side of the hill, to find a love that will not let my heart be still.  I want to lie in a clover field watching bellowing clouds float by, to gaze at a summer’s cobalt sky.

I want to read poems with my legs dangling over the highest cliff, this…only this will give my earthly heart a lift.  To stare out at forever, on the landscape below, as I pray that my time in the here and now will travel ever so slow.

I want to dip my toes into a frothy sea, to feel the salty wind upon my face and know that I am in the right place.  Here on earth and alone I will survive and I hope that if there is a God he will wait for me a little while.  I am already old, but as surely as I breathe, I am not ready to go. 

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©2016.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

thBPHSKA15“Life is short, live it. Love is rare, grab it. Anger is bad, dump it. Fear is awful, face it. Memories are sweet, cherish it.”

 

 

 

 

 

Souls Awakening…

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Souls Awakening…

The soul is love; it rides upon unbridled

winds aware of its passageway leading

to happiness or sorrow.

Souls descend from the Heavens, created by

God; born of faith that promises will be kept for

all eternity.

The desire for serenity in our hearts comes alive

as we grow toward life‘s beginning and end, toward

love and truth; none of these are ever far apart. 

 

©2016.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

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For Charlotte

 

 

Taking Root- Poetry and Free eBook October 13-17 at Amazon.com

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Broken winds from the slow hand of God

lifts the waves ever moving surging towards

some crystalline shore.

The evolution of change, moving forward

toward the end, the scaling of old skin, leaving

only a shadow of the imperfection of life.

New, newer, seasons never turning back,

blooming into tomorrow, searching in a colored

cloud of being.

Enlightening the darkness, alone, unafraid;

stained by time; it is time to be free, in truth it is

time to take root in the now.

©2015.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

 

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