Local poet pens his fourth book

Published 7:52 am Wednesday, July 22, 2009

FRANKLIN—Ricky Clemons knows all too well the pain of suffering with a mental illness. He also has his own spiritual way of helping him cope — poetry.

The local author, who suffers from paranoid schizophrenia, has penned his fourth book of inspirational poetry titled “I Am My Mountain to Climb,” which will be available in September.

“The Lord showed me years ago that he can use me, regardless of my mental condition,” he said. “My illness could not separate me from the love of God that I surely know today.”

Clemons, 51, has been creating poetry since 1995.

“I believe the Lord inspired me to write poetry from a lot of bad experiences I had in life,” he said. “Writing poetry gives me peace of mind and keeps me connected to God. If I had allowed my illness to keep me down, I wouldn’t have made it this far in life.”

He said he had his church, family and wife, Trephenia Clemons, to thank, too.

“I thank God for my wife and my kinfolk who never stop loving me regardless of my mental condition, and I’m also blessed to have a church family who accepts me for who I am.”

Clemons’ latest work focuses more on his life and testimony than his other three books — “The Brush of Poetry” (2004), “The Straight and Narrow Road” (2006) and “Ocean of my Soul” (2008).

The book, published by Jones Harvest (www.jonesharvest.com) should be available for purchase in Christian bookstores beginning in September.