Don’t Make Plans

A few weeks ago, I shared that I planned to do things a bit differently this year at least concerning my submission goal and that I planned to study for and take the GRE. Well, we’re almost through the first month of 2017 and I’m already flaking on those goals. Seriously! In my defense, there are a few literary journals that I already had listed to submit pieces to and I need to get those in by February for the most part. 

I still want to work on some academic and nonfiction pieces while I have the time but first and foremost is getting these poems submitted. Especially since it’s on my to do list for the year. I have so many pieces that I think are interesting and one that I want to research and build so here’s to hoping that I can make it happen. 

The GRE is being pushed to the back burner because I am seriously reconsidering, again, whether I truly want to pursue a Ph.D. I’ve been waging this battle for quite a while but I think that I’ll eventually (hopefully) get the GRE taken. 

 In the meantime, I am finishing these poems for submission and then getting back to my original plan. I  hope! 

Let Them Not Say- Jane Hirshfield

Let them not say:   we did not see it.

We saw.

Let them not say:   we did not hear it.
We heard.

Let them not say:     they did not taste it.
We ate, we trembled.

Let them not say:   it was not spoken, not written.
We spoke,
we witnessed with voices and hands.

Let them not say:     they did nothing.
We did not-enough.

Let them say, as they must say something: 

A kerosene beauty.
It burned.

Let them say we warmed ourselves by it,
read by its light, praised,
and it burned.

Literary Ink

In addition to most things literary, I also love tattoos. That might seem odd but it’s true. I love carrying ink on my person like I’m a book. I think a poem might spring forth from that line. But back to my original statement, I have been craving new ink and during an insomnia inspired think fest I decided that literary ink would be a perfect addition to my collection. 

So I image searched to see what other bibliophiles were going about tattooing on their bodies and there are so many beautiful pieces out there. I want a quote from one of my favorite books or authors but I want it to look like words from a book.

As a lover of words, I think there’s a beauty in words and ink. So until I find the perfect ones I’ll be researching quotes and ink. 

A Life of Service 

If you grew up in America in the late 70’s, early to mid 80’s then you probably recall some of the news about Martin Luther King Jr’s birthday becoming a national holiday. I remember when the weekend and Monday meant movies about MLK most of the weekend and all day Monday. 

As a result, I always felt a bit like I knew all that there was to know about MLK so I began to read about the other M’s: Malcolm, Marcus, and Medgar. The older I got, the farther I drifted from going back to MLK to read as an adult which is horrible. I’m going to make sure to pick out at least one or two books about him to add to my evergrowing TBR list. But I’ve also decided how I’m going to serve in his memory. 

While today is a day of service, we have to remember that his life was one of service. That he paid the price for so many freedoms that people take for granted today. I read this amazing Instagram post earlier that encouraged people to write down a goal to uplift someone else’s dreams. I haven’t done it yet but that’s how I’m going to honor Dr. King today and in 2017. 

Happy MLK Day! 

Be Nobody’s Darling-Alice Walker

​Most people think of Alice Walker solely as a novelist. In my brain, she’s the ultimate multi-hyphenate: poet-author-essayist-scholar-educator-finder of Zora. I’ve been in a bit of a mood for the past few days, which is not helped buy the fact that I can’t find a book to read, but this poem brightened my day quite a bit. I wish that the teenage version of me knew about this poem because I would have probably painted it on my bedroom wall. 

Enjoy! 


Be nobody’s darling; 

Be an outcast.
Take the contradictions
Of your life
And wrap around
You like a shawl,
To parry stones
To keep you warm.
Watch the people succumb
To madness
With ample cheer; 
Let them look askance at you
And you askance reply.
Be an outcast; 
Be pleased to walk alone
(Uncool) 
Or line the crowded
River beds
With other impetuous
Fools.

Make a merry gathering
On the bank
Where thousands perished
For brave hurt words
They said.

But be nobody’s darling; 
Be an outcast.
Qualified to live
Among your dead.

The Unthinkable

Big announcement…I’m a reader. Like inhale books and keep them, love the smell and heft of them type of reader. But for the past week and a half I have been unable to get into any of my recently purchased books. A few week’s ago, during Amazon Kindle’s sales I was able to purchase Karin Slaughter’s The Kept Woman and Yaa Gyasi’s Homegoing for great discounted prices. I tried started to read The Kept Woman twice. I able lonesome tried another book with no luck at all.

I don’t know what happened or how to get out of this rut. I know it’s not the books; it’s me. The last, new to me,books that I finished were by Catherine Ryan Hyde and then nothing. This is coming able lonesome the worst possible time because I’m currently stuck in the house with nothing to do but grade for an online class.I’ve tried various genres and everything but nothing is catching my attention.

Have any of you ever been in a reading rut? How did you get out of it? I welcome any and all suggestions for how I can fix this craziness. 

Ladylike Silence

-Zora Neale Hurston
I speak loudly 

And forcefully

Because my voice is important too.

I can be demure

But I will  yell

To be heard.

I can curse like 

A sailor

Or speak like a Southern belle.

They will never take my silence

As being complicit;

Will never beat me to death 

With it.