Picture It & Write/ Ermilia

vintage-teacupsA girl now eighteen

Was ready and pristeenwoman in mirror

The word was ever more

Flowers on the floor

Bouquet in both hands

People from all landslady_vienne2

Vows were said  I do

Yes I will marry you

Kisses, hugs and bows

A big Victorian houseCape-May-Victorian-homes

A night of passionkissing-love

Love and thrashing

A morning all new

A cup of tea with you.

Written by,

Terry Shepherd



Picture It & Writebook4pictureitandwrite2copy-1

Picture it & Write

http://ermiliablog.wordpress.com/2013/09/22/__picture-it-write-65/#respondbodies runningpictureitandwrite2copy-1

Two people never introduced to society. Running free, no fear of being naked. Life is simple. Eat from the ground. Make light from wood. Shelter being given by leaves and bamboo.

An innocence I wish I carried with me. But I live in civilized territory. Fear has been embedded within me. Trust was wiped off the chalkboard years ago. Erased with words of hate and prejudice, poverty and hunger.

Ashamed that my body is not perfect, hiding in cloth. Beauty from within  now determined by what others say and promote. Lock your doors, secure your car, alarms everywhere.

Fear of enjoying a midnight stroll, danger looking in corners. Jealousy the beast smolders in us, what we have is now not good enough. Eating out of boxes, microwaves for busy schedules.

Families put aside, God kicked out of homes and schools. Money out of balance. Scales showing needs verses wants, which weighs more? Education comes from books. Culture learned through a ticket.

A hand shake replaced by security. Smiling faces turned upside down. Racing here, racing there. Health has been shifted. Diabetes, high blood pressure, more heart attacks and death come too early.

Yes, my brain has been tampered with. I fear more than I know. I am no longer innocent. I lost that before I loved it. It is a miracle in itself that we as a country function as well as we do.

Our belief in what ever it may be that keeps us moving forward each day, this is what we cling to. Hope for a better day, dreams of tomorrows and memories from yesterdays. This helps us stay mentally alive.

For one day there will be a new world. A re-birth and I will once again be brand new. Innocence and living on faith will all be mine. What would it be like to go back and try to pretend that we don’t know all that we have learned? Could we do it? Could we run through the forest? Run naked with no fear? Live from the earth? Could we laugh more than we cry? Would illness surround us? Would worry be replaced with calm?

Only each of us know what we are capable of doing today. We have learned but not all we learn is good.


_picture it & write/ Ermilia


open seaIt’s what we all want, isn’t it?

Do we not want life to turn in the direction of our own way of living?

Do we not want the feeling of

Freedom at all times?

To feel the gentle breezes

To see beyond  the horizons

To be in touch with our soft side

No arguing

No fighting

Peace surrounding  us

A wall that can not be broken

Yes, following our heart’s desires

No errors in our plans

The perfect life

The smooth road

No bumps to trip over

Would our lives

Be forever changed

If we didn’t stumble

Now and then?

Peace, serenity

Mixed with a dash of trouble

Helps the mind grow

Inspires us to be

Better people

Living along side

Of vast millions

I long for this

As you do also

We need each other

We want to count

We want to matter

And so I say

Look to the oceans

Take in the beauty

Feel the inner peace

And smile for the

World truly is

On your side

We just have to

Trip a little

To discover it.

Written by,

Terry Shepherd


Picture it & Write/ Ermilia


Jon felt his life was just putting too much pressure on him. He seemed to believe that he didn’t have a life. Pieces of his soul had been ripped and torn; given to others. Every time he tried to connect a piece of the puzzle back together the goal was broken.

He sat now looking down. Using the height of magnitude he was able to see where it started. His parents owned a business. He became their gopher boy. Running errands, fixing meals, taking care of baby sister.

In between these jobs he tried to go to school. Concentrating on learning was replaced by what he had waiting for him at home to complete. He wanted good grades. He dreamed of going to college. He could taste the success of becoming a doctor.

But by the time he finished instructions left for him he was too tired to study. He would fall asleep after his parents came home. He would wake up, drool lying on the pages of his book.

As time progressed and he wasn’t needed for a sitter so much his rules were changed from sitter to driver. He learned about money. He paid bills, he budgeted his parents checkbooks.

One time he even had to barter with the electric company because his parents had let the bill slip by and he was the one who had to make arrangements to get it turned back on.

His gift to learn was his key to him keeping good grades. When his counselor called him in and offered him applications for colleges he quickly grabbed them. When he got home and he had the little bit of time to call his own, he filled them out. The next day he was back in the school office turning his pages in.

When the news came that he had been accepted his heart jumped out of his body. Genuine smiles were seen in each class. He was going to be a doctor. But how was he going to get a way? How was he going to claim his right to live as his own?

When he went to bed each night, he made the time to pray. He prayed for a way to escape. He needed space. Night after night the ritual went on.

The day came. It was graduation day. He walked proudly through the line accepting his diploma when his name was called. He looked out over the crowd hoping to see the glow from his parents’ but only his mother had made time to attend. Even his sister had not made it a priority to show up.

That night holding his diploma in his hand he realized that he had one week before it was time to leave. A new life was holding the doors open for him. His name was on the list. Tugs were pulling at his heart. He needed, no he wanted and desired this opportunity more than anything in life.

When he fell asleep he had a dream. He was sitting below the heavens. Placed on a cloud of success with his name on it he looked over his life and at the lessons he had learned. Determination and not giving up were his biggest teachers.

Now he turned a way. He looked towards the doors being held open for him and the cloud steered him in through the open ways of a bigger and better life. The world was his and he was not going to let it pass him by. He was on his way to becoming a doctor.pictureitandwrite2copy-1


_Picture it & Write/ Ermilia


man with ropeExhausted he lay down on the street. This was his last try at proving he was worthy.

Paul had lived on the dark edge of life. It finally caught up to him and he spent several months in jail. Theft being the number one judgement. Drug use turned from social to everyday living.

While he was incarcerated he always noticed the beautiful brunette that had long legs and big blue eyes.Black Cherry She came on a regular basis to see her brother who happened to be Paul’s roommate.

Saying hello and goodbye is what consisted of their conversations but at night when Paul laid down he started to dream of her. In his dream he was in love with her and he asked her to be his wife. She quickly accepted and he spent their entire marriage giving her every heart‘s desire.

But in the day hours the coldness whipped through his heart as he could not get more than a passer-by look. When his roomy wasn’t visiting Paul would question him about his sister. He learned that Pamela was her name. She had moved out from the family house when she was 13. Living with friends and on the streets she had worked her way up to being a manager of a fine lady’s specialty store.

Paul touched his lips as he formed the word of this sister. The beautiful eyes with long lashes. He discovered that Pamela only lived in the city next to him. Paul was getting out soon and he was determined to make his dream reality.

When the day came and his release was final he went to his hangout and grabbed all he owned. He took the cash he had saved and moved to the city Pamela lived in. He found his way to where she worked and stood in the shadows swallowing in her beauty.

He found himself a job, a respectable job as a window washer for a huge department store near by. He begged for an advancement on his pay check and for unknown reasons the manager granted him his wish.

He took most of the money and rented a room at a boarding house. He built himself a routine of walking by where Pamela worked on his way to his job. After work he would walk back by her store. Sometimes he was lucky and he would see her.

One time as he was standing outside in the shadows she exited and looked his way. She stopped in her tracks and he came out of hiding. “don’t I know you? Oh yes, you are the guy who was bunking with my brother in jail. I see you are out now? Well I hope you learned your lesson and do not make another visit. My brother still has another six months to learn while he sits there.”

” I wonder if you would go out to dinner with me this Friday?”

Laughing she said, ” you are kidding I think. You spent time in the slammer. I am sorry but I don’t think so.”

” But I have changed. I learned a great deal while I was in there. I had plenty of time to think. It wasn’t like I was in for murder or anything. I just got off on the wrong track.”

” Well I feel like I know you and yet I know nothing about you. Why don’t you give me a few days to think about your offer. I will look for you then and give you my answer.”

Paul smiled his biggest smile in hopes of winning the answer yes. They parted and life went to the same rhythm and dance. She would see him and give no answer. He took it up a notch and started sending her flowers and cards. He took a nice chunk out of his pay and bought her the biggest box of candy he could.

It happened on a Thursday afternoon. She came out and he was standing in his regular spot. She looked his way and he came towards her. She smiled at him. He noticed her smile.

” Well I have given it a lot of thought. I know you have done some bad things before and I am not crazy about it. But you also are the only man who has ever worked so hard and so long at trying to get my attention. I will go out with you and tomorrow night shall be the night. Pick me up about 7. Do you drive? No? Well meet me here and you can walk me to the next block where there is a nice  restaurant. Where some nice clothes.”

He stared after her, watching her walk a way. Finally, what he had dreamed and waited for was going to happen. Tomorrow night, less than 24 hours from now. He hurried home and went through his bare closet. If only she would have made the plans for next week. Maybe I could have managed to buy some decent clothes. If only I hadn’t been spending my extra money on flowers and candy.

The next evening came and he was waiting for her. He had bathed and put his best clothes on. She walked up and he took a deep breath  as he drank in her beauty. They walked the steps to the restaurant. She seemed in a hurry and he had to pick up his pace to stay with her.

Once inside she told the waiter what area she wanted to sit at. She placed the order for the two of them. He sat there his dream being cracked around the edges as he began to see the light.

The conversation was more one-sided and he didn’t understand what she was talking about most of the time. All he knew was that it was about her work and that she had this plan and this meeting.

Dinner was served. She ate with grace.  He ate with comfort. The conversation was as cold as her heart and the life was slipping out of Paul. After a respectable amount of time had been spent she announced she needed to get home. She had to get up early for a meeting.

” I appreciate everything you have done in drawing my attention Paul. You seem very nice. I gave it a shot but I just don’t feel anything for you. I am sorry. Will you kindly not stand outside my work anymore? I am sure there is someone out there for you if you just give her a chance. I will call a taxi. Thank-you for a nice evening.”

She gave him a peck on the cheek and a quick smile. He had lost. His heart was being torn out of him. He didn’t go straight home, but instead took the long way home. It started to rain and then it was pouring.

He laid down on the edge of the street feeling the wires pulling on his heart. He lay there letting the rain drops wash the memories of her smile a way.

_Picture it & Write/ Ermilia

http://ermiliablog.wordpress.compictureitandwrite2copy-1man scared

All his adult  life Joe had been living an alley life. Taking from others. Eating others remains. Not willing to spend out of his pocket, but interested in hoarding what was his.

He could not see himself as anyone but the richest man in the city.

The only way this creature could figure out how to get that is to steal and connive.

Everyone hated him. People gave soured looks when they heard his name. Innocent became damaged. Trust was taken out of his dictionary. All that remained was evil, theft, hatred, jealousy. This was his dictionary of life.

He had grown up poor. His Mamma took in ironing. His Pappa had worked the mines but had ended up paying a high price and died of lung cancer. His sister ran off with the first man who sugar-coated his words.

Now it was up to him to make a life for himself. He swore to himself he would be damned if he was going to live as his family. He wanted more and no matter how he had to do it, he would wear blinders.

He knew the good word. He went to Sunday School as a child. But no one could get him to accept the idea of worshiping a man who had never been seen. Who was so crazy that they would grasp at the imagination, cling to empty words? Well, not him. He would work hard, he would become rich. He would own the city when he was done.

One day as he had just taken another bag of money from an unknowing human  he was racing down the streets. He had his routine. He knew the favorite hide-out. It had worked each and every time.

But this time his game plan failed. The people he had stolen from knew his name. They offered him to dine with them before he left and went on his way. The food was delicious. He had seconds. He took the food. He took the goods.

He ran but he started cramping. Running became a slow pace. Power became weak. The once clear skies became black with birds. Vultures ready to pick the life from his bones. He tried to run faster but his body fell to the ground. The birds  feasted. The town returned to quiet. The man who had offered him food was sitting on his porch smiling.

Picture it & Write/ Ermilia


sunset-jarIt’s where I wish I was

Right now, for I feel

Trapped within my own

Jar of life

The lid tightened

The colors foggy

Pressing against

The glass no one

Sees me as my

Reflection bounces

All around me

Forcing me to

Look inside

At my own person

I cry to get out

But you don’t

See my tears

It is up to me

To turn my

Entrapment into

A release

For my soul

For my health

I stop, and listen

My mind speaks

I must be free

Once again.

Written by,

Terry Shepherd


_Picture it & Write/ Ermilia


ladywhiteA princess, a virgin, not only her gift that had  been saved for the right person, but the heart had  been left untouched. Pain had never entered and torn the seams of her heart.

Tears never beimg shed. Skin white as snow. Brought up by loving parents who bought the daughter every thing a heart could desire.

But love can not be bought. Love can not be earned. Only love can be given.

Shared between one soul and another. Secrets tucked deeply within, spoken through eyes and touch.

Warmth from a  hand touching hand. Fingers entwined. Feet touching feet. Knees brushing softly against another.

Yes, this is what the child craved and yearned for her entire life. She was brought up in the finest schools. She wore the most expensive linens, shipped in from afar. Gold draped from the tiny dip in her neck. Light catching reflections from ear lobes.

Yet love had never been bought. The once pure heart was now open at one edge, letting feelings with no name pierce her like a needle being pricked on the finger. A chill wiggled freely down the spine, when eyes would take in  internal photos of others holding hands, stealing kisses.

Desires rose inside the body. Heat came to the surface causing blushing cheeks and a feeling of becoming faint. She wanted what she did not recognize. Her body letting her know there was more to experience that she had not yet tasted.

Graduated from school, a black limo coming to a halt in front of the magnificent cherry wood doors. The door opened and once inside the grand hall coldness set in as she looked at the walls and ceilings screaming riches.

Climbing the spiral staircase, walking familiar steps,  opening the once too familiar door, she sat at the lace draped window staring out over the hills of green. Looking down over the blue water, watching the caretaker tending the pools, her loins stirred as she took in the silken skin. Watching him take his red handkerchief out of the back pocket she could not help but notice the snug fit of the legs trapped behind the rough material. Molded of muscle running down to feet now bare to the earth, browned from the sun.

The mind could only wonder what lay beneath. Grabbing her hand fan she moved it in front of her face, wishing the beads of sweat a way. Fingers touching  lips, she got up and changed her clothes.

Walking down towards the pool, taking a seat on the lounge chair directly across from where he worked. He looked up and marveled at the beauty he saw. Feet cemented she didn’t want to leave. He tipped his hat as his job was done and it was time to move on to his next task.

Each day eyes searched the grounds in hope of seeing and feeling the tingle that was buried deep inside her. Each time they met, conversation became longer, smiles were exchanged, arms brushing arms.

One day she did not see him. Going to bed aching not knowing how to soothe the inner turmoil, she slipped her house coat and slippers on. She quietly closed her door behind her and made her way to the pool.

Dropping her covering she slid into the water, letting the coolness enter and take a way the heat. In a short time she was no longer alone. Hands reaching around her waist, reaching up and cupping a breast, the familiar heat rose once again. Passion came pouring out through her eyes and her lips. Fingers exploring, slipping under the bubbles the heat she once did not understand was put out by a flame that no amount of money could ever have purchased.

She now understood as she lay in her bed, unclothed, blankets tossed aside, she touched her lips and outlined the smile. She touched the once virgin area and her desires surfaced once again. She closed her eyes and dreamed of this meeting again, maybe the next night.

Picture It And Write/ Ermilia


Oh how glorious

How delightful

To let this bed

Take me where

Once sugar-plum

Fairies danced in my head

Dreams of pink elephants

Visions of lollipops

Reliving my innocence

All over again

Pretty dresses

In ruffles of white

Black patent leathers

With shiny buckles of gold

Lacy white anklets

Twirl in circles

Of delight

Golden locks

Sway gently

In the breeze

What has happened

To these light

Hearted days

Why is it so

Hard to find them

I guess time has taken

And people have spoken

And babies were born

And words said I do

Have done the impossible

Turned me from a child

To the woman I am  today.

Written by,

Terry Shepherd



_Picture it & Write, Ermilila

http://ermiliablog.wordpress.compictureitandwrite2copy-1black man

I studied this photo quite a few minutes. This is a mistake that I don’t like to make. I have never done this. I usually write my first thoughts in any story.

But for this photo prompt I saw many things. I wondered what other bloggers were seeing and then I thought, stay true to yourself Terry. Write what you see and feel, not what others may be doing.

So here goes.

I am proud of my name. My name is Samson Jr. . I was entertained when I was young by listening  to stories told by my parents and grandparents of how slaves in our families  had fought, lost and loved. I am proud of how far our present family has come.

I  live in a house with my parents who bought it with money they had worked hard and saved for. When my parents got married, they had nothing but love and the clothes on their backs. God was the center of their lives and they never let faith drift too far a way from their front door.

We have  running water and Papa bought Mama a used set of appliances; a washer and dryer. Mama didn’t have to wonder if it was going to rain or not. She could just put the wet clothes straight in the dryer and walk a way until the buzzer went off.

I go  to a public school system. There are mixed colors in all classes, but black children are less seen. Bullying and hate run  rampant after school  and many times the police can be  seen at the school yard breaking up fights. One time I can remember a black kid, about nine or ten was shot on his way to school.

It was just awful when I was just starting school. I can remember being picked on by the other students and the teacher doing nothing about it. White kids called me names and tore my home-work up in shreds. I would explain to the teacher why I didn’t have it but she still checked my paper with a big red F.

It took talking to my parents and many sessions with the nice counselor after school before I realized that I could do something about it. I learned that I didn’t have to let bullies pick on me. Mama always reminded me that I was special. She told me it didn’t matter what color my skin was; God made us all the same on the inside.

Slowly I gained confidence and I found ways around the kids in my class. I would write out two essays. I had an extra copy in case the kids got a hold of my homework. I learned to sit in the center, front seat. I sat right in front of the teacher’s eyes. She couldn’t deny when something bad was going on. She had no choice but to fix the problems.

I think she hated me. My one teacher just didn’t like me at all. I believe she considered me a trouble maker by making a spectacle out of myself sitting up front. After class one day she pulled on my shirt sleeve. She asked me,” What is it that you are trying to prove Mr. Samson Jr? Are you looking for attention? Don’t you get enough in your own home? Why don’t you sit in the back row with the rest of your friends?”

I can remember looking her square in the eye and saying, “I sit in the front row so I don’t miss anything you are saying Mam. I plan to graduate this school and go to college some day.”

I can still hear her cackling and seeing her tossing her arms up in the air. All she could get out of her painted red lips were, “Really now, so you think you are smart enough to go to college? Well I guess Mr. Samson Jr. time will tell us the truth on this. Go on, get for home.”

Thank goodness life is better today. I did finish that teacher’s class and I did graduate from that school. I worked hard like my parents taught me. I worked my fingers to the bone. Mama and Papa didn’t ask for a single cent. They let me save every single penny I earned down at the grocery store.

I went to a local college and I paid for most of it all by myself. My last year of college I was just beginning that first day and my Sunday School class gave me a gift. It was a gift of money. I can still remember feeling the hugs from each one of my class mates. I thanked them and I am sure I had some tears in my eyes. The entire church had a Sunday noon picnic in my honor too. I got some white envelopes from other folks too.

When we got home I had Mama help me count all those envelopes up and with the money from my Sunday School class and all the other folks, I was so surprised when half of my last year was already going to be paid for, and in advance. I was so proud as I walked into that school office and handed them over the money.

They wrote me  out a receipt, but all they really said was, thank-you. I went a head and finished school. I graduated being a teacher. In fact, I teach other kids in the very school I had attended myself.

Not long after I started teaching Papa died. It really wasn’t that long afterwards that Mama died of a broken heart. These were the hardest days of my life. Burying my parents whom I loved so much. I ended up selling the house and kept with me their personal belongings, and I moved into a nice apartment on the top floor.

It had so much room, I could just run and do flips if I wanted to. The ceilings were high so I could sing and hear my own voice echo off the walls. It had hardwood floors and the living room had two windows that I could open up and let the fresh air in.

The kitchen wasn’t really much to talk about but who cares. It had the important things. An old stove, but it did work, an icebox, and a small red table with two steel chairs. The living room came with a sofa and there was one over-stuffed chair. It had seen better days and had a couple of tears in it. I didn’t care. I took my parents bed blanket and threw it over it. Every time I sat in it, I would think of Mama and Papa.

I had to share a bathroom with two other apartments on my floor. I was the only black man living up here. They weren’t very friendly, but they didn’t bully me either. We just sort of stayed our distance when we would see one another. Sometimes our eyes would meet but quickly part.

I was a happy man. Each morning as I was frying up my bacon I would give thanks to God for one more day. One more chance to teach, one more chance to learn more about life. I lived in this apartment for about four months.

I didn’t get to stay there as long as I had planned on it. I had been teaching that day. It was a day of trials. Kids didn’t turn in homework. They talked too much instead of listening to my voice. I teach fifth grade students, and we all know how restless kids can be at that age.

School was over for the day and I gathered up my books and headed home to fix supper. When I got to my corner of where I lived, I saw my building was on fire. The fire was coming from up high. I just knew in my heart that the smoke was damaging all my belongings as well as I am standing here breathing.

I froze in my steps and I felt tears sliding down my face. I took my red handkerchief out of my back pocket and wiped my eyes. I glanced around at what else was happening. There were blacks and whites fighting in the streets. Some had broken bottles and were trying to  hurt others. Where were the police? When had this started? I wept as I was thankful for how far my family had come in life, but I bled tears for the distance we still had to go to learn to accept that we may be of different colors, but on the inside God made us all the same.