Cherokee Woman Remembers the Trail of Tears

Cherokee Woman Remembers …

Cherokee Woman
Cherokee Woman, 1903


An old Cherokee woman remembers the Trail of Tears
She remembers the tears after all these years.

Her mind drifted back to those days when she walked with Ani-Yu’whya, The People.

She was young and strong then and survived the long march
That killed so many, the old and sick did not make it.

It was late in the evening, summer was waning into fall. The leaves were turning yellow and slowly falling.

The old wrinkled Cherokee woman, lying on her bed, was fully aware that she would see no more tomorrows.

Surrounded by her loving family and friends, she feels their grief as she listens to their mournful sorrows.

Her mind is drifting back to uncertain days of long ago,
She hears the soft percussion of a drum from a distance.

She remembers the wild buffalo and listens to crickets chirping in the green forest trees.

The aroma from a glowing crackling fire drifted to her as she savored the soft tingling breeze.

So many thoughts of her loving husband who passed on long ago,
Her children and grandchildren, the contentment of watching them thrive and grow.

She remembers the clear blue river that fed her people, their faith in Great Spirit and her unknowing remorseful fate.

The dark day.

Her people were forced to march and relocate

She remembers the tears, after all these years.

She remembers her last childbirth while marching to the new unfamiliar reservation,

And the hole she dug in the ground for the river of life that her body would release.

Then gentle Cherokee friend hands caught the child that would rest alone in peace.

Memory of the sadness flooded her mind as they all shed tears when the night air was void of a newborn’s sweet sound,

And her newborn was left in unfamiliar ground.

She remembers life on the old reservation.

The sadness she witnessed

From her prideful Cherokee Nation.

No more buffalo, no more clear blue rivers.

Happy chanting ceased to exist.

Only memories left of all the happy days

They all sadly missed.

She knew her time had come to depart and she did not fear it.

Her eyelids close as she drifts away to where her ancestors and loved ones await her spirit.

Her unhappy day’s are over,

As she is tearfully placed in the ancestral burial mound.

Ruby Fuller © Copyright 2016


Image Credits:

Elizabeth “Betsy” Brown Stephens (1903), Cherokee
Walked The Trail of Tears in 1838
Wikipedia Public Domain

Latest posts by Ruby Fuller (see all)

Ruby Fuller

I am a retired R. N. who loves to write poetry and fiction. I have just found recently that I love to write flash fiction with a twist. I write on hub under the name of always exploring- AKA Ruby Fuller.

16 thoughts on “Cherokee Woman Remembers the Trail of Tears

  • August 14, 2016 at 10:04 PM

    A very sad and emotive write Ruby, and the memories of life stay with us, the joy and pain of existence. Beautifully penned and heartwarming. I really enjoyed it.

  • August 14, 2016 at 11:20 PM

    A sad and touching story, well portrayed through verse. Well done, Ruby.

  • August 15, 2016 at 11:59 PM

    Ruby this is amazing. I could picture it all. Such a great tribute and remembrance of the Native Indians.

  • August 16, 2016 at 1:20 PM

    Thank you Phillis. This one is close to my heart since my grandmother on my father’s side was one half Cherokee Indian.

  • August 16, 2016 at 1:22 PM

    Hello Tony. I’m happy that you enjoyed. Thank you for reading and commenting.

  • August 16, 2016 at 4:13 PM

    Hi John. This was a sad time in our history, as well as slavery. Thank you…

  • August 16, 2016 at 4:18 PM

    Hello Kurt. It made me sad to read about that sad time in our history. There is an excellent article about that time in Wikimedia Commons-Public Domain. Thank you for coming by my page…

  • August 16, 2016 at 4:20 PM

    Hello Rasma. I’m happy that this was visual for you. Thank you for commenting.

  • August 16, 2016 at 8:54 PM

    That was a very touching. Love you Ruby

  • August 17, 2016 at 6:34 AM

    Hello Tammy. So happy you were touched by this story. Come visit me. I love you too.

  • August 17, 2016 at 8:16 AM

    This was beautifully penned, Ruby. Those sad times are revered in memories, passed along through the generations. My Dad told us that his Grandmother on his Dad’s side was part Cherokee. How interesting that you have that ancestry as well. I’m writing a novel that depicts her travels (in the 1800s) so this poem is quite inspirational to me. Thank you.

  • August 17, 2016 at 11:00 AM

    Hello Peg. So happy to see you on this site. Yes, we certainly have a connection, both grandmothers being Cherokee. Your book sounds interesting. Thank you…

  • January 14, 2018 at 6:28 PM

    Elizabeth Betsy Brown was my great great great grandmother. Very nice writing about a dark chapter in Cherokee history.

  • October 30, 2020 at 5:12 PM

    Hello Kevin, I’m more than amazed that the picture that I used was your great-great-great-great grandmother! I feel humbled that you visited my sad story. My grandmother, my father’s mother was one half Indian, so I feel connected. Thank you so much. God’s blessings..


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