Monday, February 23, 2009

Monday Night FreeStyle


I can't talk about her side part wrap
wore my hair that way for many years
and I can't talk about the way she changed the subject
when her neck became hot
it bothered her too much to speak
I've been accustomed to talking about her for years
how the color never changes
and she's always carrying around a faded handkerchief
dabbing at the moisture that tells her truth

And the way she dresses old-school
really didn't bother me
'til I found out I'm not easy to accept change
rather wear something clean
than new
and out of character

The cling-clank of the bangles bothered me
how she seemed to move them around
and emphasized her pointless-points
never knowing it was music to her ears
a distraction from what was happening around her
and comforted her

when i realized it was a mirror image
i suddenly began wheezing
though no asthma consumed my body
it hurt a little
a lot
to realize
i'd taunted her
disregarded her feelings
cruised on auto-pilot
while others captured their far-away dreams
and I sat
minding her business

For some reason, Monday nights seem to be nights for reflection. I don't intend to make it so and don't know how long it will last. But I notice, Mondays speak to me in a way no other day does. I feel renewed, new, and inspired. Don't ask me where the inspiration comes from; I can't tell you. It just is. Like God; who just is. I had a client tell me she makes her day. And I guess every Monday, I'm just making mine... even if it is in the evening.

Stay peace.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Patience and tolerance...

Patience is a virtue, tolerance is not. So how much can one tolerate before saying "this is it?" When saying that, does it mean the individual has given up? Or does it simply mean they've done all they could do? Ran out of options? Or realized it was a storm they could not surpass?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Writing contests

I've spent a few good hours combing the net for 2009 writing contests to enter and want to share what I've found with you.

Writers Digest

Annual Writing Competition
For 78 years, the Annual Writer’s Digest Competition has rewarded writers just like you for their finest work. We continue the tradition by giving away more than $30,000 in cash and prizes!

Win a trip to New York City !

GRAND PRIZE: $3,000 cash and a trip to New York City to meet with editors or agents.Writer's Digest will fly you and a guest to The Big Apple, where you'll spend three days and two nights in the publishing capital of the world. While you're there, a Writer's Digest editor will escort you to meet and share your work with four editors or agents! Plus, you'll receive a free Diamond Publishing Package from Outskirts Press.

Entry Deadline: May 15, 2009.

For more info, click the ling --->


Random House

Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers is proud to announce the
Eighteenth Annual
Delacorte Yearling Contest for
a First Middle-Grade Novel*

The prize of a book contract (on the Publisher’s standard form) for a hardcover and a paperback edition, including an advance and royalties, will be awarded annually to encourage the writing of contemporary or historical fiction set in North
America, for readers age 9–12. The award consists of $1,500 in cash and a $7,500 advance against royalties.

All federal, state and local taxes, if any, are the winners sole responsibility. Prizes are not transferrable and cannot be assigned. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO WIN.


1. The contest is open to U.S. and Canadian writers who have not previously published a novel for middle-grade readers. Employees of Random House, Inc. and its subsidiaries and affiliates, and members of their families and households are not eligible.

2. Foreign-language manuscripts and translations are not eligible.

3. Manuscripts submitted to a previous Delacorte Press contest are not eligible.


1. Manuscripts should be no shorter than 96 typewritten pages and no longer than 160 typewritten pages. Include a brief plot summary with your covering letter.

2. Each manuscript should have a cover page listing the title of the work and the author’s name, address, and telephone number. The title should also appear on each manuscript page.

3. Manuscripts should be typed doublespaced on 8 1/2" by 11" good quality white paper, and pages should be numbered consecutively.The type should be easy to read, preferably 12 point.The author should retain a copy of any manuscript submitted.

4. Photocopies are acceptable if readily legible and printed on good quality white (not gray) paper. Partial or illegible entries will not be acceptable.

5. Photocopies are acceptable if readily legible and printed on good quality white (not gray) paper.

6. Do not submit manuscripts in boxes. A padded envelope will do. Please do not enclose checks for postage. The publisher is not responsible for late, lost, misdelivered, or misplaced submissions.

7. Please enclose a business-size stamped, self-addressed envelope for notification only. Please do not enclose checks for postage. Due to new postal regulations, the publisher cannot return any manuscripts. All submissions will be recycled by Random House after they are read.


1. Manuscripts sent to Delacorte Press may not be submitted to other publishers or literary agents while under consideration for the prize.
2. Authors may not submit more than two manuscripts to the Delacorte Yearling competition; each must meet all eligibility requirements.


1. Manuscripts must be postmarked after April 1, 2009, but no later than June 30, 2009.
2. Send manuscripts to:
Delacorte Yearling Contest
Random House, Inc.
1745 Broadway, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10019


1. The Judges are the editors of Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers.
2. The judges reserve the right not to award a prize.
3. The judges’ decision will be final.
4. The editors of Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers will not be able to offer critiques of manuscripts or enter into correspondence about the manuscripts other than with the winning author.
5. Writers will be notified between July and October as submissions are evaluated by the editors. Final contest results will be announced on our Web site on or around October 31, 2009.

Click here for website ---->


The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland
(students only)

Creative Writing Contest
Money, Money, Money? - The Challenge

NEW PRIZES!!!! Read more.....

Juniors and seniors…these last years of high school are exciting—college visits and applications, prom, graduation—but they can also be expensive. How will you pay for it all?

A budget is one tool you can use. Even if your only income is an allowance from your parents, you can still get in the habit of making smart budget decisions and stretching your dollars further.

Budgeting money may be easy for some, but it takes real effort for most of us. Tell us, in a creatively written composition of your choice, how you will take charge of budgeting for additional expenses in your junior and senior years. Discuss the various expenses that you anticipate and how you plan to pay for them. How will you prioritize your expenses and handle unanticipated ones? What trade-offs are you willing to make to get what you want most? What mistakes do you hope to avoid? Be sure to include economic concepts in your composition.

Whatever you do after high school, taking control of how you handle money today will give you more choices in the future. Good luck!

Acceptable written compositions for this contest include essays, short stories, poems, and plays.
Submission Deadline: March 20, 2009
Examples of economic concepts include:

Budget a written plan for spending and saving money.

Financial Goals the desired results of one’s efforts to achieve personal economic satisfaction.

Incentive a factor that encourages people to do something; often a monetary reward or the prospect of obtaining one.

Opportunity Cost the value of possible alternatives that a person gives up when making one choice instead of another; also known as a trade-off.

Standard of Living the overall degree of comfort of an individual, household, or population, as measured by the amount of goods and services its members consume.

Website ---->


There are many more, but I'm going to work on my chapbook now. Had some thoughts cross my cerebellum...u know how it is...

Stay peace

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Black Love; my truth

It's February and there are two things in the air: love and blackness. And to combine the two is like whoa!

Black love is so complex. I hear the sighs and see the head-shakes...the whispers challenging that ALL love is complex, and that may be true. But that isn't my truth.

I only know of Black love.

Love as in memories of being seated between my mommy's thighs while she greased my scalp, of being held by my father after a whipping and being told, "I'm doing this because I love you. It hurts me just as much as it hurts you."

I'm speaking of a love that makes my man grab my hand, intertwining our fingers, while being followed in the store...Black love.

The kind of love that knows struggle to the point it makes us emotionally bound even though we are strangers...Black love.

A love that makes our hips ride bass lines because we have jungle in our blood...Black love.

Through our kinks, relaxers, press and curls, we gather together gossiping about this Black love and that Black love; getting gorgeous for the Black love at home.

Waiting for bald fades, line-ups, ceasers, and goatee trims, Black love floats through the air in the form of jokes, jives, and high fives.

As we waltz through February, I look forward to being more aware of the complexity of Black love. How about you?

Stay peace

Monday, February 2, 2009

Monday Night FreeStyle

To Be Continued

It isn't the way I move my hips
slightly out of tune
as if my momma wasn't black
that makes my rhythm unique

It isn't the way my hair kinks and curls
with no destination
as if my roots have a mind of their own
that makes my style 'ethnic'

It isn't the way I love my man
through hills and valleys
as if our chemistry is magnetic
that makes me a greater woman


It isn't the way I hold my children
through night terrors and soiled diapers and teen angst
as if they are appendages of my soul
that makes me mother of the year

It's the way that I smile
It's the heartiness of my laughter
It's the birthmark in the white of my eye
the smirk defining my sarcastic nature
the way I love my double D's
the power of my voice
the reason in the depth of my decisions
the empathy I carry on my sleeve
the tears I refuse to shed
the violence I do not partake in
the adoration of my melanin
the thirst for knowledge I have
the hunger for equality burning righteously within me
the way I purse my lips before I bless someone
the tumbles and turns of life that I refuse to let hold me back

that defines me
all that I am

and in this moment
I realize I am all that
and more

So no, it isn't my penchant for vintage clothing that makes me a throwback girl
And it isn't my disdain for designer labels that makes me frugal
It's my reality of me
And it could be that I'm just cheap
haven't dug that deep
I am to be continued

Stay peace


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