ABUSE – The Map to Death


The Map to Death

The fermented smell on your breath

makes me dizzy; it hangs in the air as

decay hangs to a fallen oak; rank but

mellow. Your hand held my wrist tightly;

I felt the bruise beginning and remembered

the look of my battered body and the snap

of your belt buckle on my back in the past.

You beat upon my head and pushed my

head into the hard red dirt at the side of

the road, standing over me in silence; I

could see my blood drying upon your shirt.

When I woke, I was in a basement, it was

dark and dank; spider webs dangled and

drooped from the rafters, mildew covered

everything, it stank, I hugged my battered

body and prayed for my life.

There was no sleep; rats moved about in

and out of the chinks in the dark, mildew

crawled up concrete walls like dark tropical

snakes. Still I would not give up life.

I thought about feelings, I feel my fate which

is laced with fear; a dance travels through my

head the music traveling from ear to ear.

I think of those I love, of the people in my life…

which are you? You walk softly upon the ground,

I walk beside you learning as I go.

The floor is the red dirt of the country, worms

live there crawling over me like climbing a winding

stairs; I sleep and wake with no knowledge of time.

Does God have a plan for me, will the door open

and the air bring fresh life; have I learned my lesson,

will I know where to go.

My body is shaking now, my fear falls away, I will soon

be gone; my hair hangs limp damp tendrils fall around

my bruised and bleeding face, I have nowhere to go.

Outside I hear the song of a wren, she trembles and

I know she is gathering twigs; I want to sing with her;

the leaves whisk across the lawn and I can smell the


Within the depths of my soul, I can taste the clear

water below the house where we live; I can see the

wounds with the last light of day.

If only I could return to yesterday, but that is not

possible for tomorrow, you will be standing over my

damp grave and speak words filled with lies to those

who are unaware. I have no rights.

I was once a lovely woman even the birds sighed

when I passed by, I tried to live a life of virtue, but

even God cannot save me now.

You will stroke my bruised chin and say you are

sorry while you stand beside another with perfect

white skin; you will hold her hand and tell her that

she is pretty.

Her full lips fit upon yours with perfection, she will

quiver at your touch; but with you, she will never

know freedom; her life will seem like an eternity, her

bones will grow old living with your wanton ways

You are a man, a beast, you love, you hate; your mate

will be your friend before becoming your foe, she will

see your darkness and your light.

You will take away her light and bring her darkness to

you place of slaughter, her eyes will begin to see; she

will hear my weeping from the grave as she is imprisoned

within our serpents den.

She will know madness and despair; she will die under a

ragged moon and it will be a tearless night for you, the


You will bury her in the dark damp earth, we will share

our roadbed of dirt, and stone until you find another to

join us in the ravines of your eternity.


Author: Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree

Artist/Writer of Fiction, Poetry, Prose and Thoughts, Opinions Author Bio Born in Alabama to a Native American (Chickasaw) father and an emotionally absent mother since birth, raised by father, a Native American great-grandmother and an African-American woman whom were all grand storytellers. As early, as four years old, I was roaming the countryside around our home alone or with my father; in the evenings I sat at the feet of these strong-minded individuals listening to the stories of their lives. Summers I lived with my fathers' sister in Birmingham, Alabama; it was she that would help to discover a library, and mingle with my aunt's circle of friends that included local writers, artist, and politicians. A cabin deep within the Black Warrior Forest was also my playground on weekends. My aunt encouraged my imagination by introducing me to journaling, which I filled Big Chief Tablets with stories over the summer. Planted was the desire to write, a seedling waiting to spurt from the warm southern heart of a child. Nonetheless, with adulthood, the desire to write buried itself deep within, the dream wilted but did not die. It laid dormant, gaining experiences. These experiences became short stories and poetry ready to share with anyone who would want to read them. I began painting as a child and later as an adult, and then it lay dormant for years. I write of many life experiences in poetry format; questioning everything from Mother Nature to God...the poetry is raw, sometimes dark and may not be understood by all. Yet, it comes from deep within and reads of truth within my soul. The harshness that shrouded my life would cause me to withdraw from most of the world; it fills the pages of my writing, the heartache, the abuse, and the denial of a mother, all frankly portrayed. Today, I enjoy my children, grand and great grandchildren, my four-legged companion Mason, I live in Southern Wisconsin...far from my southern roots; however, I continue to write and paint almost daily. Below are the books that I have published in paperbacks at Amazon.com, under the name of Ann Johnson-Murphree: Book #1 Echoing Images from the Soul 2012 Book #2 Beyond the Voices 2012 Book #3 Reflections of Poetry 2013 Book #4 Honeysuckle Memories 2013 Book #5 Sachets of Poetry on Adoration, Anger, Asylums and Aspirations 2014 Book #6 My Journey into Art 2014 Book #7 Fragments of Time 2017 Book #8 Rutted Roads 2016 Book #9 Asterial Thoughts 2017 Book #10 Flying with Broken Wings 2017

10 thoughts on “ABUSE – The Map to Death”

  1. Intense scenerios. I think there is no God while children are abused as such and lets them suffer a life of torment a byproduct of abuse in their heads for the rest of their lives. Where is the justice?. How long must this go on with the all seeing one? A plan? There is no plan for the abused children while that entity watches. Just lifelong memories of emotional scars. I know I would do something and many others would do something. I just have to look at the concentrations camps of WW2. Why all this suffering and killing of woman and their children. I can go on with many wars and senseless abuse but I would turn my comment into a book and maybe more. Nope I don’t see justice with so many!!

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.