Earlier paintings in Acrylics and Watercolors…
The include from left, Prairie Family, MAKA-Medicine Man, Chickasaw Mother and Child, Desert Women.
Misery has sent many souls Hell. They condemn
themselves; a mournful cry comes from their place
of unrest. They cry for what they wanted in life and
did not get, they could not be satisfied with what they
had, misery prevailed. They have helped destroy the
In the beginning there was cold, unceasing and
relentless rain, there seem to be a mutation of the earth
as the decades went forward with minds unchanged.
Days were heavy with hail, turbid waters mixed with
cold and snow, fiery had a tight hold on the waters that
covered the earth, still many humans could not see the
doom and darkness upon the earth.
Their souls are putrid, the soil of the earth is foul, above
them the ravens swarm in and out of the acid sky, the
beast of the earth roams follow grounds. Each of those
misery humans fell to the ground gathering handfuls of
soil casting it into the hollows of the earth. They now
know that gluttonous greed will bring rancid air and their
belly’s growl like the beast of the night with hunger.
There are many who tried to save Earth, they toiled in the
dead ground and prayed for blessings, they watch the
writhing shadows of misery, it was too late. Everyone hungry,
cold, uncomforted, everyone will die for the mistakes of few.
The waters both salty and fresh began to dry, cracks became
vast and deep. The land was soft and filled with bugs and worms.
The air clogged their lungs they cried and they prayed it was
too late. Those who did not believe that one day we would destroy
the Earth now became sinful spirits living in irrevocable doom.
There are those that believed the earth was being destroyed,
there are those who tried to find a resolve for these worldwide
conditions. To those that did not believe the earth was dying,
became accusers living in great pain. Warnings from the sinners
were no more than strange words, there is no way that we can
reach perfection on earth, it is too late. It is not too late to resolve
misery’s problems, we must cease our downward path and heal
A Place of Reality…
I have spoke of horrifying things, are these
weak words built from understanding. I am
neither a coward nor a saint, my thoughts
are clear, my plan open to change. There are
times when I live in the “Outer Place”, where
no one can get to me where no one knows me
where I will not be bothered by human drama.
There is no place that I can flee; I fear I was
born too early or maybe too late. At night I
dream of heaven, I traveled from star to star.
Do I have a wish in that dark realm, there
looking toward Earth I see the creation. Heaven
was not open to me, nor was Hell; the dream,
the darkness of night, it was a strange descent
into my place of reality.
It is there in reality that I search for truth, as I
dream, I follow a dark stream to the sea, and it
is there that I find a sacred place for me to
dwell. The place that I dwell is not for the faint
hearted, it is on this path that I find my true
worth, within time I find whom I may follow.
There are no more delays to this life; there will
be no more words. I must travel forward on
this hard and dreadful way.
The Chickasaw – Part 8
Sipsee and Jane thought life at Chadwick Manor was worse than they could have imagined witnessing pain and sorrow. They also learned to live in a world where freedom was recognized only by the color of one’s skin; they learned that the world they lived in showed hatred for both the Negro and the Indian people. The Indians were mostly free in many of the states that withdrew from the Union.
They would learn how to survive…
Jane had wonderful memories of her mother and father; she also had nightmares of seeing her father killed and of the Master of Chadwick coming to their one room shanty during the night. The sadness of moving from the forest onto land where she was surrounded by cotton, and living with her mother’s sadness, Jane knew that both she and her mother would need to learn a new way to survive.
As a favor to Sipsee, Mistress Chadwick-Alboin and Master Alboin allowed Jane to be schooled along with their daughter; Jane learned reading and writing, elegant manners. Her mother told her that an education was the only way she would escape from being an Indian; Sipsee wanted her only child to do extremely well in this new land, to be accepted in any social setting. Jane did want to learn the white man ways; she would never forget that she was the daughter of Hawk Over-Town.
Their home may have been a one room shanty in slave quarters, but it was home; Jane was a tall gangly girl that did not have the beauty of her mother, instead she was to bare the hard sculpted features of her father. She felt safe when she and her mother were roaming the woods collecting herbs and plants for medicine. Sipsee would teach Jane the ways of their people, the custom, the culture, they would grow strong and some day be more than slaves to rich landowners. Sipsee wanted to see the day when she and her daughter did not have to address these people as Missus and Master.
Then War came to Chadwick Manor…
The State of Alabama declared that it had seceded from the United States of America on January 11, 1861. Jane was thirteen-years-old; she had learned many things like gracefulness and proper manners; Sipsee had succeeded in keeping her daughter from the Master, now she had to worry about the soldiers both Union and Southern, neither respected women. It was during the beginning of the war that Sipsee found out about other Chickasaw’s living in the area; the Mistress of Chadwick sent them there to be safe, neither side Union or Southern bothered the Indians. When they arrived everyone greeted them, they were shown kindness; it would be their home until the War Between the States was over.
Jane right up to the end of her life would not talk about the War. She and her mother were happy when it ended; Jane was seventeen-years-old. She would only say that the greed of the white man would be their downfall. Sipsee and Jane remain in the Chickasaw village when the War ended.
It was there that Jane met Pap. He was a scout for the South, and Jane just became a teenager and was smitten by him. Sipsee did not care for him as he was twenty years older than Jane was; Sipsee hoped that he would not come back; Jane felt a sadness she could not explain.
To be continued…
Storyteller – Jane Over-Town “Overton” 1848-1954 at the age of 106 her mind was Like a steel trap, she never forgot anything, It was her body that was ready for death; she lay down for an afternoon nap and woke only to say goodbye to the grandson she raised, my father.
Grandson – Roy C. Johnson
Granddaughter – Vina Evans-Quinn
Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree Great – Granddaughter
BOOKS AT AMAZON.COM BY ELIZABETH ANN JOHNSON-MURPHREE
My last entry I wrote of a feeling of impatient irritation in reading “FAKE” or “REAL” news, that feeling continues however I have not had time to post; please excuse me; the mind or body did not cooperated these past few days . My depression sometime has a life of its own that I cannot win.
I told you of my great-grandmother who was the “Keeper of the Memories” for the family. Everyone called her “Ma”; I spent many hours sitting next to her rocking chair just listening. You read of her father Fosee, her grandfather and grandmother, all Native Americans living in Alabama Territory.
(Ma as the storyteller continues) However, Fosee like all of the boys in his vision could not wait to go on his Vision Quest. Early one morning his father woke him it was time to find his own Totem. At the edge of the forest (this would later be known as the Black Warrior Forest), he was shown a path that he must follow, yet, to find his own path in life. Somewhere down that path, he would discover himself.
On that path he saw many signs of small animals, he found a bush with his favorite berries; quickly pushed his hunger out of his mind, he could not eat until he discovered his path in life. Mid-day he came upon a clearing Fosee lay down in the tall yellow grass staring at the sky and watching the clouds drift by; he drifted off to sleep. It was in that sleep he dreamed that his grandfather was with him; Fosee smiled when he looked at the leathery chiseled face with deep furrowed lines and the long white hair cascading around his strong shoulders. Then he heard his grandfather calling his name, Fosee jumped from his warm bed of wild wheat and ran toward the river, he had much to do before dark. Fosee carried rocks and cedar branches to the top of a large flat rock, the made a circle placing twigs in the circle, he used flints to light his fire and was soon fast asleep.
Fosee did not move from the flat rock where he drifted in and out of sleep both day and night, he was hungry; one day led to the next. On the third day, he leaned over looking at the river below; then he thought that he heard his grandfather. Then, he saw him, sitting across from him, the smoke stung his eyes and it was like a thick fog, but he could hear his grandfather talking to him, although his mouth never moved. It was the spirit of his grandfather.
On the fourth day came and this would be his last night on the rock, floating in and out of consciousness. The eastern sky looked like the forest was on fire, the western sky a full moon seems to be dipping behind the cliffs that edged the river. Suddenly, a Hawk with massive wings glided over the fire landing next to the circle of rocks. The Hawk spread his wings pointing at one of the rocks saying, “This is where you life began”; then he spread his wing around the circle saying “This is where you life will end”. There was one rock missing. Fosee returned to the path, the Hawk followed him, and then swooped down landing on a fallen tree. When he looked back to the path there stood his father and they returned without talking to meet his mother at the cooking fire. He turned to the center yard saying, “I am no longer Little Bird, my name is Hawk”.
Resource – Storyteller – Jane Over-Town “Overton”
1848-1954 at the age of 106 her mind was
Like a steel trap, she never forgot anything,
It was her body that was ready for death; she lay
down for an afternoon nap and woke only to
say goodbye to the grandson she raised, my father
Post Writer – Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree
A great American Artist
“There are no words to describe how I feel, we have lost another great one!”
ELIZABETH ANN JOHNSON-MURPHREE BOOKS AT AMAZON.COM AND BARNES & NOBEL.COM
FLYING WITH BROKEN WINGS
REFLECTIONS OF POETRY
SACHET OF POETRY
MY JOURNEY INTO ART
Thanks for reading and in advance thank you for your comments. EAJM
HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY TO EVERYONE THAT CELEBRATES THIS DAY….
This image is what “a picture is worth a thousand words” means.
I have been very busy trying to meet a deadline so I will be away for a short period of time. I promise to visit all of you soon.