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Train of Thought: Poetically Expressive Creations

Train of Thought: Poetically Expressive Creations

by Barbara C. Johnson

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Train of Thought presents a collection of poetry that contains a unique and intriguing compilation of themes. As bold as it is vulnerable, it combines elements to create a vivid depiction of a broad spectrum of emotions. Through her graceful writing ability, Barbara C. Johnson fearlessly captures the basis of life's emotional essence. Interspersed with her


Train of Thought presents a collection of poetry that contains a unique and intriguing compilation of themes. As bold as it is vulnerable, it combines elements to create a vivid depiction of a broad spectrum of emotions. Through her graceful writing ability, Barbara C. Johnson fearlessly captures the basis of life's emotional essence. Interspersed with her poems are short prose passages exploring her thoughts further.

These verses seek to examine the positive and negative feelings that the experiences of life awakens. They trace a pathway of ideas and imagination, ultimately unveiling an effusive Train of Thought.

She gathers the thoughts of what she'd say

when the time came

Words ... Colliding

Stumbling away in her brain

And her mind ... attempting to release how she feels inside

Fantasizing the fantasies

Realizing the realities of a generalized speech

broken down piece, by piece, by ... peace

Yet there she stays speechless


Muted like Chaplin's exquisite expressions

She became a mime

The sole narrator of gestures

in her mind

-from "Words Without Substance"

Product Details

iUniverse, Incorporated
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.44(d)

Read an Excerpt

Train of Thought

~Poetically Expressive Creations~
By Barbara C. Johnson

iUniverse, Inc.

Copyright © 2011 Barbara C. Johnson
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-4620-4860-1

Chapter One

    Black ... (And proud)

    I am black
    Celebrating the mystery
    of the layers of my ethnicity
    for every quality
    defines me to be so

    I am radiant
    I glow
    Brighter than the light of the suns most luminous smile

    I shine
    Like a polished River of Niger gem
    for rubies never grow dull or dim
    I'm a genetic reflection
    A generational root developing

    Permeating this skin's membrane
    is my ancestor's DNA
    For I come in all shades
    Pecan, coffee brown,
    butterscotch, and purple haze

    I am black
    Midnight onyx to be exact
    Authentic and gifted
    Eclectic and centric
    with an exquisite style to match

    In fact,
    I am black
    black is exactly what you see
    A well-structured masterpiece
    An ebony filled medley
    Like arts mosaic piece

    I'm unique
    Like music's devoted melody
    Are you listening
    Can't you hear me whispering, ... calling, ... yelling, and chanting

    ... Black ...

    CoverGirl ... (Beneath it all)

    Cosmetic perfection changed her skin,
    yet blemished her soul
    She's supernatural
    Blotched, bleached, blended
    Airbrushed to perfection
    Far from the realm of where foundation begins
    And I don't mean the kind applied to the skin
    But natural colors given
    from generations

    Before replacements of cosmetic ensembles
    Blushes, mascara's and eye and lip liners
    cause beyond all of that you will ... find Her
    Quintessentially mixed
    Not forged or counterfeit
    But legit
    and just as natural as a pearl

    But to be a CoverGirl
    is to be flawless to the world
    Means to cover the girl with synthetic appearances
    to give her manmade features
    A human creature
    Idolized for a mask that conceals her true features
    And though she's more beautiful than her exterior portrays
    all that you can see is that she has a pretty face
    and that's the cover of this girl

The scheme of cosmetic perfection is having a complex for altering your complexion. By not allowing your natural beauty to shine through, you are neglecting the characteristics given to you. You see her all the time before applying that mask. If you get to know her then you'll realize that she really isn't bad at all. After all, beauty is art that isn't always sketched, drawn or painted on.

    I Am ... (An ode to a calendar sister)

    No matter the month
    I'm a woman of all season
    Like a unique mixture of
    spring, fall, summer and winter
    within the company of long slender trees
    and flourishing green meadows

    I Am
    As sweet as the taste
    of those honeysuckle treats
    growing alongside the creek on this evening
    Even of those before and after this day

    I Am
    The product of all my sisters,
    from chaotic to blissful
    Showering tears in April,
    then fully blooming like a rose in June
    For my attributes are inspired
    by the humbleness of August
    and from her will to accommodate by any means

    In addition to these things
    are the qualities of me
    The leading, guiding, protecting
    and nurturing kind
    For I'm
    the fertility goddess of growth
    A woman in her prime
    A blessing to life and all of mankind
    I'm that blossoming fruit to fully emerge in time
    because I ... am ... May

Like the beautiful seasons, I flourish. And at any given moment I'll flap my wings and fly like a gust of wind. Watch me. I'm like air ... peaceful and serene. Feel me. I'm a necessity for life. You need me. Breathe me. What's in a name? August, April, June, and May. Is it the title of months, or the tale behind the name? Guess it depends who's answering.

    May Flower

    On this side of the wall
    a flower will grow full bloom in the fall,
    just as it does in the wilderness
    Oh my, how nature's tenderness
    is a force to be reckoned with

    And when I look up high enough,
    I can see beyond the uniqueness
    of the sky's horizon,
    into a reality that appears as clear
    as sunlit beams
    but is as dull as murky shadows
    lurking in the dark

    I was fine up until now
    And all was good till I remembered again
    how he stole away my innocence as if
    it had never belonged to me
    How selfish must a man be
    to go through such extreme?
    Damn him!
    And damn every man that would ever
    initiate such doing

    Because of him
    I dream nightmares wide awake these days
    And it may never change
    cause I am always led back here again
    pondering upon this very wall

Protect your children. Shower them with all the love they can stand and more. Guide them like the nightlight that illuminates their trails at night. Instill courage in their hearts and security in their minds. Never leave their side. You are the rock in the wall of their building. So be the one that they'll confide in.

    The Wall

    There are memories at the wall
    Repeated history at the wall
    Emotions flow like freestyle
    from my mental

    At the wall
    Illustrated events
    grows in increments through my pen
    For the wall represents the voice of my twin
    And speaks for everyone lost
    or fell victim or gave in
    to the circumstances of life

    Under the rocks weight
    are sheets of paper engraved
    They are etchings of lines
    that bear the spirits of past lives

    And the shadow of their soul
    is found drifting in the wind
    to only remember again
    that there is life ... after death

In this poem, the wall symbolizes strength. It represents triumph amidst the conflicts of trial and error periods. The wall is used as a crutch to keep our spirits up when we are down and out. Regardless of the circumstance, the pondering of rants and raves against a wall gives us a chance at defeating the odds overall.

    Touched by an angel's kiss

    It is never easy fathoming
    the loss of a loved one,
    whether they are blood,
    or none other than just love

    All we know is that life is
    affected tremendously by our loss
    and that we're left rebuilding
    faith all over again
    (May we be strengthened)
    And may there be comfort in knowing
    that we were touched by the
    blessing of having you around
    The only difference is that now
    you guide from a distance amidst
    the heavenly skies

    Someday I'll fly with you
    and feel your gentle kiss in the wind
    But for now I await the moment
    of when I'll see you again
    Rest in heaven

There are angels amongst us that are guiding our trails. Just the thought, at times, seem to tease our minds because we no longer have your voice to hear or your flesh to hold. And though you no longer pick up the phone to share a word or two with me, or smile as you call me by my maiden name "Cuffee", I can still feel you near. It's a bit cliché to say that things aren't the same without you here, but it's true. And though we lost our backbone when we lost you, somehow, ... we are still standing.

    Bearer of burdens

    Beneath a large crowd of hovering dark clouds
    I sit here again
    Distraught and untamed
    Relieving pain through the written scraps that
    I've trapped within the cracks
    of this structured wall's gaps

    But as much as it hurts to be the
    sacrifice for others,
    my intent is to protect them of further harm
    and to remember them through my very own suffering
    And so, I will

    Always ...

Ever realize the sacrifice you make when you take on other people's burdens? Have you ever really benefited from the stress? Many of us sought to be their rescue when we have our very own lives to tend to. But what good does it do to preach and not practice? Drama comes in many layers and facets, and is found in multitude. So, don't be confused, misled or misused. It is important to take care of you first.

    Bodyguard ... (Man of Armor)

    Heavy armor suits him well when disguising
    It's like hiding in a shell
    Or being alone and cold
    in a claustrophobic world of hollowness
    while riding an emotional hiatus
    through vulnerable circumstances

    He stands tall with a stance that's strong
    Pride's lost
    Composure's weakening
    Burdens heightened
    Defense forsaken
    and mistakes remembered so often

    His voice whimpered in silence along
    the walls of an echoed past
    But its tracings had vanished,
    disappearing into the quiet whispers
    of a neglected protection

He surrendered himself in grief
Cause very seldom had he cried that imitation rain
Or had any remorse
for all the men that he slayed

Some tough guys aren't as tough on the inside as their exterior portrays. But at some point they'll come to terms with the pain that they caused to others. Whether it takes them to the cage or to the grave, that very shame will haunt them for the rest of their days. There just aint no escaping it.

    She feels nothing ... (Love's T.K.O)

    Numbness penetrates her sanity
    dragging her further into seclusion
    cause she's losing him
    and he's lost the grasp of what it takes to love her
    To understand and know her
    To not only see things from his perspective
    but from the likes of hers too
    And for that
    she feels nothing

    Like having the towel thrown down
    on a boxing ring ground
    with the bell sounding at ten as she stumbles up again
    But even then
    she feels nothing

    And though a drowse slightly grazes her peak
    it isn't so fazing cause she
    feels nothing but the flashing of
    raging bright lights
    blinding her eye sight

    And through the heart of the fight
    prolonged voices are called
    wailing for her strength
    And others,
    chanting for her downfall

    She fell strong
    well-stretched along
    a tough canvas padding
    with her conscious hanging on barely
    She is worn, dazed,
    and paralyzed mentally

    It's an inopportune moment for her to
    breathe "Champion Air"
    But she doesn't care
    cause exhaustion from the game
    is what drained her frame
    She'll have migraines for days
    but never mind the pain
    because she still ... feels ... nothing

How can you love someone that doesn't reciprocate that same love back? And why must you give yourself fully to one who isn't deserving of the greatness that you have to offer? Is it because you love him, or the fact that he's physically there? Girl, he's really there just taking up space and wasting your time. Could it be the sex that got you on cloud nine and ignoring his lies? Or maybe it's neither one. Could just be that you're numb ... feeling nothing at all.


    I apologize for her
    for not utilizing the gift of honor
    that she knew she possessed
    But instead
    used the gyrating notions of flesh as a token
    of her worth's depreciating status

    She's like the thorn of a cactus
    as sharp as a tack
    And gets feisty when those dogs
    chase after her cat
    Tom's and Jerry's, perhaps
    But alas,
    the animated gets played
    more repeatedly nowadays

    And though she aint phased,
    I'll apologize for her
    without a stench of approval
    Cause only a fool lives in pity
    so that makes her pity-full

    She's caught in the raft
    of "Gotta have it by all means"
    cause those are the thoughts
    of illogical beings

    But if you'll hear my plea
    I must apologize for me
    for not seeing a sista's struggle
    beyond the peripheral
    of my eye sockets view
    And for not trying to know
    or understand her type of hustle

    And for the men
    I will too apologize for them
    And for all the ways
    they raged and flashed Benjamin's
    like central air was never invented
    Just clowning
    Like they were never in the company of women
    or raised by mothers, aunts, sisters, and cousins
    cause that's just the nerve of some men

    that ole Jezebel
    Mmm, mmm, mmm
    Whether a mistress
    she is still
    a woman
    and should be treated respectfully

Sometimes it's hard to not become a product of a negative environment. Many women get caught up in unhealthy situations that they later regret somewhere down the line at a time when they realize and come to terms with their importance to self, family, and their surroundings.

Though they lost their way, don't give up on them just yet ... or at all for that matter. Because as long as there is life, there will always be time to make improvements in loving, learning, and living. They don't live up to your expectations, but they are human just like you. And for that reason, they are to be respected.


Excerpted from Train of Thought by Barbara C. Johnson Copyright © 2011 by Barbara C. Johnson. Excerpted by permission of iUniverse, Inc.. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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