The Muse

My sister, Tricia would say pack away the cancer and write about something else, yet there are so many pieces we left untouched, so many shadows through our journey that were too painful to put on page, but now that she’s passed, cast their darkness at the stroke of the keys.
She has been my writing companion.. my muse. I have become comfortable blanketed in the sadness of it all. If I told her this, she would laugh and say, “Get back to the novel, and stop using me as your excuse. Write something brilliant! You’ve got this sister…You’ve got this…”
It was the same when I began writing Tricia’s story. It took awhile to get warm and cozy with it, for I had to force an Indian boy out of my writing space… out of my imagination.
His name was Seed Planter… When he turns 13, the life he knew is gone, and he is forced to change his name to Charles Wolfe. He is the Pawn in the game of peace between the pale face and the Cherokees, honoring a treaty where the Cherokee Chiefs agree to send their sons to the Brafferton Indian School at the College of William and Mary. Here, they will be educated on the hope that they’d return to their tribe and share what they learned.
The year is 1768, Charles creates mischief at Brafferton, and finds comradeship with a red-headed idealist who studied law, by the name of Thomas Jefferson. When they are caught racing their horses down the Duke of Gloucester Street, Charles’s slave and closest friend Samuel is ordered to return his horse to his father in the Georgia mountains, but somewhere along the journey, Samuel disappears. A distraught Charles seeks employment from Benjamin Franklin as a mail carrier, in order to search the colonies up and down the seaboard for Samuel. This search places him as an eye-witness to the unfolding of freedom, and he soon becomes the perfect spy for the patriots on the brink of the Revolutionary War, for the British never suspect a Cherokee.
I don’t know if anyone will care to read this story upon it’s completion, but I have been on a scavenger hunt for the last three years, which has grown into a pile of research on my desk, and a chalkboard covering an entire wall of my studio scribbled with a timeline of events.
This is a story I was passionate about before Tricia’s cancer consumed my concentration. I thought if I threw it out in cyberspace, like a boomerang it would return my imagination to the year of 1768, when freedom found it’s birth over a sudsy ale in a dark tavern.
Hopefully soon, I will hear Seed Planter’s voice whispering his story into my ear again, but for now, I still hear Tricia’s pushing me forward.
“You’ve got this sister!” she says… “You’ve got this…”
So I tell my imaginary friend Seed Planter, “Get your voice box ready, it’s time to play.”

February 2015

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