Honoring a Special Woman

An amazing woman!

All in a Day's Breath

Elizabeth Jameson

Elizabeth Jameson is an magnificent imperfect human being – or as she puts it, a human being living in an imperfect body.

Elizabeth married the love of her life and had two boys. She had a degree with honors in law and was a human rights attorney. She was in the prime of her life, and looked forward to serving others with a variety of needs.

Then one day, when she took her boys to a playground, she suddenly suffered from an attack on her brain. It turned out to be a rare form of MS that starts at the brain stem, and it very quickly took hold of her body, ultimately leaving her a quadriplegic. In the early stages of her illness, she became depressed because she had been living to be able to help others and to serve in the best ways she could. She first…

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Verse out of time… Mabel Esther Allan

 

Mabel Esther Allan  1915 – 1998

 

Born in Wallasey, UK she made up her mind to be a writer at the tender age of eight years old. Her publishing debut was interrupted by WWII when she served in The Women’s Land Army, Teacher and nursery warden for the children of factory workers. With her first publication in 1948, The Glen Castle Mystery, she made the decision to focus on writing for children. Her career included 170 books published for children. She sold 330 short stories between 1936 and 1937. Among her works included volumes of short stories, poems, essays, and her autobiography.

 

 

Immensity (Written during The Battle of Britian)

 

You go at night into immensity,

Leaving this green earth, where hawthorn flings

Pale stars on hedgerows, and our serenity

Is twisted into strange shapes; my heart never sings

Now on spring mornings, for you fly at nightfall

From this earth, I know

Toward the clear stars, and overall

Those dark seas and waiting towns you go;

And when you come to me

There are fearful dreams in your eyes,

And remoteness, Oh, God! I see

How far away you are,

Who may so soon meet death beneath an alien star.

 

                            –  Mabel Esther Allan

The discovery of voices from the past and their messages are bridges to understanding that as much as things have changed, the human condition remains much the same. What voices from the past have you unearthed recently? I so enjoy meeting new friends and would love to hear about the ones that have captured your interest.

Bisous, Léa

Verse out of time… MAXINE KUMIN

Maxine Kumin 1925 – 2014, Poet, Author,  Poetry Consultant to the Library of Congress (now known as U.S. Poet Laureate). Pulitzer Prize winner who left us with a large and varied legacy of her works ranging from Poetry, Essays, Novels, Memoirs and Children’s Books. 

 

How It Is

 

Shall I say how it is in your clothes?

A month after your death I wear your blue jacket.

The dog at the center of my life recognizes

You’ve come to visit, he’s ecstatic.

In the left pocket, a hole.

In the right, a parking ticket

Delivered up last August on the Bay State Road.

In my heart, a scatter like milkweed,

A flinging from the pods of the soul.

My skin presses your old outline.

It is hot and dry inside.

 

I think of the last day of your life,

Old friend, how I would unwind it, paste

It together in a different collage,

Back from the death car idling in the garage,

Back up the stairs, your praying hands unlaced,

Reassembling the bits of bread and tuna fish

Into a ceremony of sandwich,

Running the home movie backward to a space

We could be easy in, a kitchen place

With vodka and ice, our words like living meat.

 

Dear friend, you have excited crowds,

With your example. They swell

Like wine bags, straining at your seams.

I will be years gathering up our words,

Fishing out letters, snapshots, stains,

Leaning my ribs against this durable cloth

To put on the dumb blue blazer of your death.

                                                                             – Maxine Kumin

While there is a wealth of current poets and authors, there is much to be gained by reading the works of those who have gone before us. While reading a book by the late Carolyn G. Heilbrun, I was introduced to the work of Kumin. There is a special joy in discovering another trove of treasures and perhaps some of you will stop by and mention a few that you have discovered recently.

 

Bisous,

Léa

Wednesday’s Words to Ponder…

HARRIET TUBMAN  1820 – MARCH 10, 1913

 

“If you hear the dogs, keep going. If you see the torches in the woods, keep going. If there’s shouting after you, keep going. Don’t ever stop, keep going. If you want a taste of freedom, keep going”.  – Harriet Tubman

“There was one of two things I had a right to Liberty or death. If I could not have one, I would take the other, no man should take me alive. I should fight for liberty as long as my strength lasted”.  – Harriet Tubman

“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.” – Harriet Tubman

“I freed a thousand slaves. I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.”  – Harriet Tubman

“I had crossed the line. I was free, but there was no one to welcome me to the land of freedom. I was a stranger in a strange land.”  – Harriet Tubman

“I was the conductor of the Underground Railroad for eight years, and I can say what most conductors can’t say; I never ran my train off the track and I never lost a passenger.”  – Harriet Tubman  

Born a slave and named, by her parents, Araminta “Minty” Ross, around the year 1820, she became the most well known of the conductors on The Underground Railroad.ty

She served as a conductor for a decade. The abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison gave her the nickname, “Moses”. It was through her own efforts that she accumulated the funds she would need to continue her mission. Over time, she built a reputation for her deeds and thus supporters helped by providing both shelter and funds for her trips to the south.

Harriet served as a cook, nurse, laundress, spy and scout during the Civil War. She returned to her home in Auburn after the Emancipation Proclamation where she remained for the rest of her life. Her doors remained open to those in need and her earnings from her vegetable garden she added to the funds raised to create schools for the purpose of educating African Americans. She gave speeches on Women’s Rights. While not a leader in the movement, she was a strong supporter and the women who were leaders had supported her efforts in The Underground Railroad. Tubman believed in the equality of all people, black or white, male or female.

Personally, I find it appalling that the sitting President has gone back on the plan of the previous administration to honor Harriet Tubman with her face on the front of the twenty dollar bill and former President Andrew Jackson moved to the back. Trump is determined to undo as many good works from the Obama administration as possible. Unfortunately, it is hardly a surprise that such a racist, misogynistic individual would carry through with the plan. He doesn’t even keep his own promises to the people of the country.

Bisous,

Léa

Wednesday’s Words to Ponder

“Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, small minds discuss people”.  – Eleanor Roosevelt 

“Justice cannot be for one side, but for both”.  – Eleanor Roosevelt

“You must do things that you think you cannot do”.  – Eleanor Roosevelt

               “Never allow someone who is not allowed to say yes, to say no to you”.                           – Eleanor Roosevelt

“When will our conscience become so tender that we will act to prevent human misery rather than avenge it”.  – Eleanor Roosevelt

      “I once had a rose named after me and I was flattered. But I was not happy to read the description in the catalog: not good in a bed, but up against the wall”.                     – Eleanor Roosevelt

“A woman is like a tea bag –  you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water”.  – Eleanor Roosevelt

Eleanor Roosevelt was born on October 11, 1884, in New York City. The niece of Theodore. Roosevelt, who would become president and who married a man who also became president, Franklin D. Roosevelt. Eleanor took on the role of the first lady and made it her own. She wrote her own newspaper column, My Day, advocated for human rights and women’s rights. She held press conferences and after the death of her husband went on to chair the United Nation’s Human Rights Commission.

 

Despite being married to the president, she was not content to sit back idly and smile for the camera. She developed her own public voice while working with the American Red Cross. Eleanor accepted increasing challenges following her husband’s polio attack that would render him dependant on physical assistance for the remainder of his days.

 

As her husband took on the mantle of command of a nation, she forever changed the role of a first lady. refusing to be relegated to a life of domesticity, she gave press conferences and rallied people for causes that she held worthwhile. Among the causes she campaigned for were human rights, children’s causes and issues relating to women. She worked tirelessly with the League of Women Voters. She focused on ways to alleviate the suffering of the poor and against racial discrimination. During WWII she traveled abroad in support of American troops. She continued this role until her husband’s death on April 12, 1945.

 

Despite her plans to fade away from public life, that was not to be. In 1945, then President Harry Truman appointed her delegate to the United Nations General Assembly which she served until 1953 when she became chairperson for the U.N.’s Human Rights Commission helping to create the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, an endeavor she considered to be her highest achievement in a remarkable life.

 

In 1961, President John F. Kennedy reappointed her to the United States delegation to the U.N. and to the National Advisory Committee of the Peace Corps and chair on the President’s Commission on the Status of Women.

 

On November 7, 1962, Eleanor Roosevelt died in NYC of aplastic anemia, tuberculosis and heart failure. She was 78 years old and was laid to rest on the family estate in Hyde Park, NY.

 

Eleanor Roosevelt set a standard for First Lady that has not been equaled. She was a humanitarian of the first order and dedicated her life to fighting for social and political change and committed to bringing the issues that would affect them, to the people.

Bisous,

Léa

“Think of your son. Think of your husband.” #ThrowbackThursday #MeToo

CHRISTINE IS A HERO AND THE FBI ONLY FOUND WHAT THEY WERE ALLOWED TO. THIS GOVERNMENT IS A SCAM AND CORRUPT TO THE CORE.

Barb Taub

“Think of your son. Think of your husband,” Trump continued. “I’ve had many false accusations. I’ve had so many. When I say it didn’t happen, nobody believes me.”—Donald Trump mocks Christine Blasey Ford’s Testimony at Mississippi Rally

Dr. Christine Blasey Ford testifying before Senate committee [Image Credit: The Cut]

I sat in front of my computer, riveted to the live feed of the hearings. I watched Dr. Ford’s gut wrenching  testimony and Brett Kavanaugh’s bewildered, infuriated response. And as the tears poured down my face, I remembered…

Events such as this happened to almost every woman of my generation. Lives were ruined, damaged, or simply never realized full potential. Overall, we got on with the business of living despite the memories we didn’t let ourselves think about.

BUT THAT’S NOT WHAT WE WANT FOR OUR DAUGHTERS AND OUR GRANDDAUGHTERS. IT HAS TO STOP.

Sure, decades have gone by since…

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