December 1967. Martin Luther King, Jr. has begun laying out plans for his Poor People’s Campaign. Florina Austin, newly married, spies a woman sitting on the steps leading up to the verandah where Florina and her husband will live. The woman’s uncanny knowledge of the space that Florina will inhabit leaves her suspicious. The following Sunday after church, Florina witnesses the woman she has come to know as Agnes, caress Redmond’s cheek. The look in Redmond’s eyes betrays longing. Florina and Agnes are neighbors. Their husbands, Negro doctors in Poinsettia, NC, hold prominent positions in the social and political life of their community.
When Agnes flees to Memphis and joins the Sanitation Workers Protests, all are aghast, none more than Florina.
As they move towards the fateful day Dr. Martin Luther King is killed, Florina learns that marriage exposes the vulnerabilities of all who pledge their trough and body. It casts an even greater shadow upon the ones who vow love unto death, and do not deliver what they have promised. When the Drum Major Died shows what happens when we resist change in favor of worn out tradition, but also what can and does occur when we open our hearts and embrace the words, “ ... be first in love ... be first in generosity ... He who is greatest among you shall be your servant. ...”
Anjuelle Floyd is the author of a collection of short stories, Keeper of Secrets … Translations of an Incident and two novels, The House and Seasons in Purdah. Her short stories and novels turn on the dynamics of women for whom life challenges impel them to examine the flawed relationships with their mothers in an effort to improve connections and interactions with their husbands and intimates. The House earned recognition in the 2011 Readers’ Favorite Awards.
Floyd is a wife of thirty years, mother of three, abstract painter, and licensed Marriage and Family Therapist specializing in Mother-Daughter Relations and Dreams. A graduate of Duke University, she received her MA in Counseling Psychology from The California Institute of Integral Studies (http://www.ciis.edu/
She received certificates of participation from The Hurston-Wright Writers’ Week and The Voices of Our Nations Writing Workshops. The Spring 2006 Issue of The Pitkin Review, literary journal of Goddard College MFA Program in Writing, lists Anjuelle’s short story, The Kingdom of Heaven in the prose/fiction section. The 2008 Issue of Windhover, the literary journal of Mary Hardin-Baylor published Anjuelle’s short story, Eucharist, that Kaleidoscope Magazine, the journal for the United Disabilities Services subsequently featured in their July 2009 Issue.
Also notable, she conducted the Master Fiction Class at the 2008 Winter Literary Festival hosted by The University of Mary Hardin Baylor in Belton, Texas.
A student of Process Painting for the last decade, Anjuelle has participated in The Art of Living Black Exhibitions 2004–2013 held at the Richmond Art Center, Richmond, California. On January 9th, 2013, Anjuelle received the Jan Hart-Schuyers Award for her painting, Intimacy, exhibited during the 2013 Exhibition of the Art of Living Black.
Anjuelle facilitates writing groups and provides individual consultation of fiction projects. She also gives talks on Mother-Daughter Relations and The Healing Power of Mothers Loving Their Daughters Unconditionally, The Need for Family, The Writing Process as a Path Toward Self-discovery and Healing.
Visit her website http://www.anjuellefloyd.com/
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