The Sitting Stone - The Inspiration


On a hot summer day in Alabama...which is nothing unusual weatherwise. I was sitting on the Fairhope Pier with my friend Georgette. A lesson of opposites, our friendship is... Jette (her nickname) had a some kind of crabbing apparatus in her hand and and I held on to a pen and paper. She crabbing and me...writing..... It was there I wrote the first line for Sitting Stone...Friends.......... from different backgrounds glued to the bonds of friendship by love and the fascination of one another's life's interest.

I wrote Sitting Stone to celebrate the matriarchial influence in our lives. Mothers, sisters, aunts... but especially GRANDMOTHERS............ your wisdom, undying love, understanding, sacrifice and especially..........YOUR PRAYERS............

Grandmothers everywhere.........I celebrate you........... Take a bow!!!

That stone......has been like an altar for me for the seven years my son been dead. He was working on carving Belma’s name in it as an anniversary present for her. He finished the first three letters of her name, BEL and then he has his accident. Belma didn’t want to keep it, she had sent the salvage here to throw it away.I wouldn’t let em put it in the trash. I had em bring it from the work shed and place it right there. Not one day has passed that I don’t come out here and sit on that stone and pray. Feels like to me, as long as that stone is on that porch, a little bit of Sam is here. Seems like the presence of God meets me strong while I sit there and pray..... Mama Jube

 MaMajube…I…I don’t understand all that’s going on. This is all so quick; I ain’t had a chance to put everything all together. All I know is I stopped by Junior’s on the way home from the recreation center and now here I am looking at you lying in a hospital bed. I just had a talk with momma and Turner and finds out they getting married and talking about taking me and you to live with them when you get out of
the hospital. MaMajube, you ain’t supposed to be laying here. You should to be waiting on me to come home from Ms. Pearl’s, only now she’s out there in the waiting room along with everybody else. You know you never raised me to be a selfish person, but nobody asked me what I wanted. When you get out of this hospital, I want things just to stay way it is. I like my bedroom at our house. When I was a little boy, I used to
look out the window of my room and see daddy carving his marble out there in the work shed. When I get lonely, I can still go to that window and feel like daddy is still out there. If I have to move, I won’t have those memories no more. If those memories are taken from me, it would be like taking daddy away all over again. (he begins to cry) MaMajube, you the only one who knows that I don’t eat shrimp cause it makes
me think of daddy’s accident that day. Everybody says he went shrimping to make some extra money for us. I…I…I can’t even talk about it, shrimp don’t taste good no more, and I don’t even like to see em. It hurts too much to remember em. Tonight, when I was over to Junior’s, Ms. Pearl showed us in the paper where it says the folks in Shrimp Bay voted against the Cross-town Expressway. I’m sure you had something to do with that. Everybody knew how you felt about it and all. You have been the only momma I have ever known, I know love cause of you. I don’t hate Belma or nothing, but she’s a stranger to me. Turner Davis seems nice and all, but I don’t want a daddy who owns a nightclub. If I have to, I will…but I sure don’t want to….not at all. (he pauses) I. I’ve got a secret to tell you to MaMajube, I ain’t told nobody this. I got daddy’s skills; I mean I can do carving just like he could. No one knows I have this talent but you and me now. Junior told me everybody calls me church boy. I don’t care, ain’t nothing wrong with going to church. You and I been going since I can remember. Junior wants me to join his band to play my guitar. He’s got all these big dreams bout going to California or New York and becoming a big music producer. He talks about it all the time. Ain’t nothing wrong with having dreams, well I’ve got dreams too. I want to be in contracting like daddy. He left me, but he left his hands with me. I could have finished that sitting stone long time ago, I know how much that
stone means to you, and how you sit on it and pray. When you go to bed at night, I go out to the porch and I stare at it, and in my mind I see my daddy carving momma’s name in it. Since he died, I could have finished it for him and gave it to Belma long time ago. I know I am just 15, but the way I see it, is God has a sense of humor. Why I say this is, daddy carved the first three letters of momma’s name in the stone. He carved a B and E and the L, the only letters left to be carved out are M and A…and they spell Ma….can you see the meaning behind that. It’s sort of like I couldn’t finish it and I know this might not make sense to anybody else, but you understand…I couldn’t finish the carving cause of the meaning of those last two letters. MaMajube, you are the only Ma I know. I could finish it for you, but I can’t finish it for Belma, she ain’t been a ma to me.

            Swift at the hospital bedside of MamaJube)

At Bechet’s, I will be there all weekend with the King Morrison Trio…well let me keep moving… Gotta lot to do before my set tonight…(pause)… I know Lee is your daughter,but there is always two sides to a story. Now, she is married to the brother of my fiancĂ© and well…we might as well let bygones be bygones……

Belma..talking to Ma Zoe

Sonny, Belma works for you, you know how she is. She don’t see too much wrong with her actions that night. She still goes by Angelique’s house and I have told her to stay away. I guess by her continuing to go over there is her way of apologizing. I know Ma Zoe is still being cordial with her cause one day she may be sort of related and all. But Angelique wishes she would just go away. You know Son….that’s why we ain’t married. I can’t trust her….I love her but I just don’t trust her. It’s plenty of women eyeballing me all the time, I just don’t know. I’ve known Belma since she and her family moved nest door from Savannah. I was bout 10 then. I always felt she didn’t think I was good enough for her, and sometimes, with as well as I have done, I still feel that way. When she married Sam Wright, I was so jealous, then she had her boy, Lil Sam, Hell, I gave up. Then Sam had his accident. Man, I felt bad, for several reasons. Number One – For Belma and the boy and Number Two is cause I had feelings for Sam’s wife. Funny thing is, I kind of feel guilty now sometimes about being with her, as if Sam is looking in from wherever he is and saying “That Son Of A Bitch"  wanted my woman all the time. It’s crazy man. I don’t know, but something deep in me says she had never really loved Sam, and I ain’t really sure she really loves me. (he changes the subject) She’s going back to Europe for another 9 month tour next spring, I don’t know if this is the kind of marriage that would work and another thing I never 
told anybody .......Turner Davis talking to Sonny

No…Titus…(Angelique interrupts) .Let me say this, I think I am doing my best to express myself on this matter.(she continues) I was raised to believe that a lady should behave in a certain manner at all times. You know Ma Zoe, she did a good job, I feel, of raising me, she was strict, but I appreciated her as I got older for what she stood for. I was never allowed to run loose and wild like some of the other girls in town, but my point is this.
Angelique talking to Titus

 Naw Man….She didn’t say.. I just know that she will be here sometime late afternoon….Have you…..    (he stops…and starts again) well what I mean is…have you talked to her about Papa and Angelique?  I try not to get in folks business, but that stunt she pulled here at the club was uncalled for.... Sonny