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AfriGeneas Writers Forum

A Poem for Emma Jeter

Write Away,

I took a writing course, in 1999, and submitted this poem.
It's based on my 2nd great grandmother, Emma Jeter. So far, what I know about her comes from her obituary:

Bradford Reporter; Towanda, PA; March 17, 1881

-Mrs. John (Emma)Jeter, a colored woman aged 81 years, died in this borough last week and was buried from the colored church, the service being conducted by Rev. Mr. Smith.

She was a slave at Charleston, SC, from infancy until the emancipation proclamation, and was mother of thirteen children, ten of whom were sold from her.

She thus experienced the horrors of slavery in its most heart-crushing phases.

Her son James Jeter, came to this place soon after the close of the war and by industry earned and saved enough to bring his parents here two or three years later.

Family, please critique this poem:

I Choose To Stay
(poem for Emma)

From the kitchen I can see the Willows
The warmth
The smell of the sweet cakes in the air

From the stable I can see the pastures
The sunlight
The smell of the junipers in the air

From the veranda I can see the creek
The stream
The bullfrogs jumping in the air

From the slave quarters I can see my children
My husband
The rope hanging in the air.

"Guided by the Ancestors"

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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