(Based On Personal Experiences)
I have been silent for a few days. I was thinking of recent & past situations. I have learned to calm my emotions, before responding.
“A clear & calm mind & heart produces clear actions.”
That being said…
We had this “Me Too” movement, that didn’t really help many, in everyday life. I find that sexual harassment is still running rampant. You can still find it everywhere & yes, it’s in the Poetry world as well, BIG-TIME. Things are just more subtle. Like the movements of a hungry snake. Keeping in mind, it occurs more from men towards women, but it happens across the board.
So what do we do about it? How many people really wish to address it? Not many. Because it’s EVERYWHERE and we know, it will take more than just a few old celebrities going to jail. It’s wa-a-a-ay deeper than that. This type of behavior is systematic & cultural. As women, we’re often forced to deal with it, like it or not. Men, often do not wish to discuss it, many feel uncomfortable because they’re guilty of it or just don’t know how to help. Is it fair? No.
So, one has to be aware in life. Don’t just trust people because you think you should; this can be friends, family, loved ones, co-workers, anyone, pay attention to those vibes/feelings you get that says something isn’t quite right, shut it down immediately, or as soon as you notice it – it may come at a sacrifice, but it’s worth it in the long run. Don’t feel guilty because you experienced it.
Educate yourself and get wise, these people have perfected their game, and become masters of manipulation. Own any role you have in it, and correct yourself, be firm and clear where you stand.
See, people who sexually harass others, hope you go along or keep silent. It has much to do with power & control. They seek leverage with their authority, positions, & roles they may have in life. People who are charming & expressive by nature make great manipulators. Certain professions; law enforcement, judges, doctors, teachers, mentors, even people you know, love & care about. This also includes musicians, writers, and Poets. Be Careful! They can talk & woo you into a place, you may not want to be. It really includes anyone. Should you be paranoid & scared of everyone? No. Simply be mindful & pay attention.
Stand Up For Yourself!
It may be difficult, but only YOU can do so. Delete, block, & ignore. Let it be known that, that type of treatment, behavior, and or innuendo is not acceptable nor will it be entertained, encouraged, or tolerated, and walk away from whatever they had on the table,
SHUT IT DOWN!
…even if it means losing out on certain opportunities – it could be a few in a group or 1 person, but you cross paths due to projects/ jobs.
It’s not easy to deal with, and for some, therapy is needed and even legal assistance. We lose out often. It’s time to put an end to this.
KNOW THAT YOU ARE DOING THE RIGHT THING
Waking up EVERY day, looking at yourself in the mirror feeling good about who YOU are, then going to bed the same way & sleeping well…That? That’s priceless.
Remember, that no one has the right to try to use you or make you feel less than who you are.
The Positivity Derived: These types of experiences can be utilized & benefited from, by talking about it, encouraging research, development, creativity, and or inventing opportunities and other methods of getting things done.
🌹✍🏾”We’re All In This Thing Called Life, TOGETHER…Remember?”✍🏾🌹
“Namastè & One Love”❤️💛💚
~Maxwanette A Poetess
*A Special Thank You: To the 1 gentleman that I shared this experience with. He stated, he would support me in my stand. That means a lot.
🌹✍🏾”We’re All In This Thing Called Life, TOGETHER…Remember?”✍🏾🌹
“Namastè & One Love”❤💛💚
“For Me? Like Many, Breast Cancer Has A Face.” ~Maxwanette A Poetess
“Love Doesn’t Hurt”
Help In The Caribbean
“On one hand, I am pleased that Jana Astanov, an enlightened artist, sees merit in my poem about racism. On the other, it saddens me that this composition is still relevant today.” ~Bob McNeil
Racism & Senseless Slaughter, isn’t just a “Black & White”, thing. It’s about, speaks, and reflects HUMANITY on a whole.
Produced By: Crocus Bag Muzik Wurxz
I love people on a whole.. But I have a deeper love for My Black People. I love our Sister~Queens & the Fruits from our trees. But at this moment, filled with, Love, Power, Energy, & Strength, I send these Positive Vibes to OUR BLACK MEN ~ OUR KINGS…
“WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH!!!”
Something Has To Change
The many talents of this man, never ceases to anaze us!
Suicide is an important topic & cause to me. Having Mental Illness close in my own family, as well as working as a Case Manager, I can overstand how an individual can get to this point. It’s not always easy to ask for help, nor does one feel like it at times. It’s good to know that there are people who actually care. Don’t be afraid to seek help.
“YOU ARE NOT ALONE.”
A Facebook friend of mine (((Hi Baba Brett))) posted this & I simply had to share it.
~Maxwanette A Poetess
“Could one friend or family member copy and repost? I am trying to demonstrate that someone is always listening.”
Available 24 hours everyday
“This does my heart and my soul good, this is real,” leader singer of Aerosmith, Steven Tyler, 70, said in reference to his charity Janie’s House.
Steven donated $500,000 to help open Janie’s House; a facility in Memphis, Tennessee, for girls who have been abused, neglected and are in need of a safe home. The home is the second of it’s kind run by the compassionate organization Youth Villages, which provides support for families with emotional, mental and behavioral problems.
A prolific and widely respected poet, Lucille Clifton’s work emphasizes endurance and strength through adversity, focusing particularly on African-American experience and family life. Awarding the prestigious Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize to Clifton in 2007, the judges remarked that “One always feels the looming humaneness around Lucille Clifton’s poems—it is a moral quality that some poets have and some don’t.” In addition to the Ruth Lilly prize, Clifton was the first author to have two books of poetry chosen as finalists for the Pulitzer Prize, Good Woman: Poems and a Memoir, 1969-1980 (1987) and Next: New Poems (1987). Her collection Two-Headed Woman (1980) was also a Pulitzer nominee and won the Juniper Prize from the University of Massachusetts. She served as the state of Maryland’s poet laureate from 1974 until 1985 and won the prestigious National Book Award for Blessing the Boats: New and Selected Poems, 1988-2000 (2000). In addition to her numerous poetry collections, she wrote many children’s books. Clifton was a Distinguished Professor of Humanities at St. Mary’s College of Maryland and a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.
Clifton is noted for saying much with few words. In a Christian Century review of Clifton’s work, Peggy Rosenthal commented, “The first thing that strikes us about Lucille Clifton’s poetry is what is missing: capitalization, punctuation, long and plentiful lines. We see a poetry so pared down that its spaces take on substance, become a shaping presence as much as the words themselves” In an American Poetry Review article about Clifton’s work, Robin Becker commented on Clifton’s lean style: “Clifton’s poetics of understatement—no capitalization, few strong stresses per line, many poems totaling fewer than twenty lines, the sharp rhetorical question—includes the essential only.”
Clifton’s first volume of poetry, Good Times (1969), was cited by the New York Times as one of the ten best books of the year. The poems, inspired by Clifton’s family of six young children, show the beginnings of Clifton’s spare, unadorned style and center around the facts of African-American urban life. Clifton’s second volume of poetry, Good News about the Earth: New Poems (1972), was written in the midst of the political and social upheavals of the late 1960s and 70s, and its poems reflect those changes, including a middle sequence that pays homage to black political leaders. Writing in Poetry, Ralph J. Mills, Jr., said that Clifton’s poetic scope transcends the black experience “to embrace the entire world, human and non-human, in the deep affirmation she makes in the teeth of negative evidence.” However, An Ordinary Woman (1974), Clifton’s third collection of poems, largely abandoned the examination of racial issues that had marked her previous books, looking instead at the writer’s roles as woman and poet. Helen Vendler declared in the New York Times Book Review that Clifton “recalls for us those bare places we have all waited as ‘ordinary women,’ with no choices but yes or no, no art, no grace, no words, no reprieve.” Generations: A Memoir (1976) is an “eloquent eulogy of [Clifton’s] parents,” Reynolds Price wrote in the New York Times Book Review, adding that, “as with most elegists, her purpose is perpetuation and celebration, not judgment…There is no sustained chronological narrative. Instead, clusters of brief anecdotes gather round two poles, the deaths of father and mother.” The book was later collected in Good Woman: Poems and a Memoir: 1969-1980, which was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize along with Next: New Poems (1987).
The book that followed Clifton’s dual Pulitzer nomination, Quilting: Poems 1987-1990 (1991), also won widespread critical acclaim Using a quilt as a poetic metaphor for life, each poem is a story, bound together through history and figuratively sewn with the thread of experience. Each section of the book is divided by a conventional quilt design name—”Eight-pointed Star” and “Tree of Life”—which provides a framework for Clifton’s poetic quilt. Clifton’s main focus is on women’s history; however, according to Robert Mitchell in American Book Review, her poetry has a far broader range: “Her heroes include nameless slaves buried on old plantations, Hector Peterson (the first child killed in the Soweto riot), Fannie Lou Hamer (founder of the Mississippi Peace and Freedom Party), Nelson and Winnie Mandela, W. E. B. DuBois, Huey P. Newton, and many other people who gave their lives to [free] black people from slavery and prejudice.”
Enthusiasts of Quilting included critic Bruce Bennett in the New York Times Book Review, who praised Clifton as a “passionate, mercurial writer, by turns angry, prophetic, compassionate, shrewd, sensuous, vulnerable and funny…The movement and effect of the whole book communicate the sense of a journey through which the poet achieves an understanding of something new.” Clifton’s 1993 poetry collection, The Book of Light,contains poems on subjects ranging from bigotry and intolerance, epitomized by a poem about controversial U.S. Senator Jesse Helms; destruction, including a poem about the tragic bombing by police of a MOVE compound in Philadelphia in 1985; religion, characterized by a sequence of poems featuring a dialogue between God and the devil; and mythology, rendered by poems about figures such as Atlas and Superman. “If this poet’s art has deepened since … Good Times, it’s in an increased capacity for quiet delicacy and fresh generalization,” remarked Poetry contributor Calvin Bedient, declaring that when Clifton writes without “anger and sentimentality, she writes at her remarkable best.” Lockett concluded that the collection is “a gift of joy, a truly illuminated manuscript by a writer whose powers have been visited by grace.”
Both The Terrible Stories (1996) and Blessing the Boats: New and Selected Poems, 1988-2000 (2000) shed light upon women’s survival skills in the face of ill health, family upheaval, and historic tragedy. Blessing the Boats is a compilation of four Clifton books, plus new poems, which, Becker noted in her review for American Poetry Review, “shows readers how the poet’s themes and formal structures develop over time.” Among the pieces collected in these volumes are several about the author’s breast cancer, but she also deals with juvenile violence, child abuse, biblical characters, dreams, the legacy of slavery, and a shaman-like empathy with animals as varied as foxes, squirrels, and crabs. She also speaks in a number of voices, as noted by Becker, including “angel, Eve, Lazarus, Leda, Lot’s Wife, Lucifer, among others … as she probes the narratives that undergird western civilization and forges new ones.”
A Publishers Weekly reviewer concluded that the collection “distills a distinctive American voice, one that pulls no punches in taking on the best and worst of life.” The volume was awarded the National Book Award. Renee Olson reported on the award for Booklist that “Clifton was cited for evoking ‘the struggle, beauty, and passion of one woman’s life with such clarity and power that her vision becomes a representative, communal, and unforgettable.'” In Mercy (2004), Clifton’s twelfth book of poetry, the poet writes about the relationship between mothers and daughters, terrorism, prejudice, and personal faith. Clifton’s next book, Voices (2008), includes short verses personifying objects, as well as poems on more familiar terrain. Reviewing the book for the Baltimore Sun, Diane Scharper commented on the impetus of Clifton’s title: “Each section explores the ways the poet relates to voices: from those spoken by inanimate objects to those remembered to those “overheard” in the titles of pictures. Serving as a medium, the poet speaks not only for those things that have no voice but also for the feelings associated with them.”
Lucille Clifton was also a highly-regarded author for children. Her books for children were designed to help them understand their world and facilitate an understanding of black heritage specifically, which in turn fosters an important link with the past. In books like All Us Come Cross the Water (1973), Clifton created the context to raise awareness of African-American history and heritage. Her most famous creation, though, was Everett Anderson, an African-American boy living in a big city. Clifton went on to publish eight Everett Anderson titles, including Everett Anderson’s Goodbye (1984), which won the Coretta Scott King Award. Connecting Clifton’s work as a children’s author to her poetry, Jocelyn K. Moody in the Oxford Companion to African American Literature wrote: “Like her poetry, Clifton’s short fiction extols the human capacity for love, rejuvenation, and transcendence over weakness and malevolence even as it exposes the myth of the American dream.”
Speaking to Michael S. Glaser during an interview for the Antioch Review, Clifton reflected that she continues to write, because “writing is a way of continuing to hope … perhaps for me, it is a way of remembering I am not alone.” How would Clifton like to be remembered? “I would like to be seen as a woman whose roots go back to Africa, who tried to honor being human. My inclination is to try to help.”
💔Many are broken💔
We need to remember that we all go through things in life. I’m not a religious individual. However, if LOVE were a religion? Then I’m a LOVER. The broken? They’re ME, YOU, US, THEM…WE. We cannot keep throwing people away. They need help as much as anyone else & sometimes even more so.
I grew up in Brooklyn, NY. Born sickly, was severely abused by almost everyone I came across in my childhood, teenage years & adulthood; from the cradle to the classroom, literally. I was always angry and in pain, physically & emotionally. I was dubbed by a close family member with the name, “Mad-Max.” I was hurting, angry, lost, became detached from life in many ways & at an early age, I became a mother (I was 16 & he was 34 – happens when you’re homeless & your parents didn’t break the cycle either)and suffered greatly. I loved my children but only partially. I didn’t know how to love them past being a provider & disciplining then. People gave up on me & it took a large majority of my life, trying to figure things out. My life was my own personal hell, filled with walls & no way out. But somewhere deep within was the real ME. The ME that was connected to a Soul so deep, that poetry was the only hidden voice that I had. I wrote poems at times, simply to hold onto my sanity & humanity.
See, when I was growing up, kids like me? They usually didn’t last long. They were killed, stuck in abusive situations, became criminals, became abusers, committed suicide, went stark raving mad (oh I lost it a few times), were bitter or simply fucked-up, one way or another. I was in my own personal hell for what seemed like a never-ending nightmare. There wasn’t anyone that loved me. I also was clueless as to how to love myself. People were afraid of me & I became afraid of myself as I sunk deeper & deeper into my own dark chaos. I was labeled a monster by my abusers, strangers, family & so called friends. There were times when being a monster was the only respect & fear that was attached to me. I was fortunate to not be a criminal. Reading at a High School level by the time I was 3, was my only outlet. I immersed myself in reading EVERYTHING.
I made many mistakes but I learned. I wasn’t able to be there for my children in the way I wished I could’ve been. But once I figured it out? It’s been part of my life’s purpose to help others & especially those that life/humanity has forgotten, the labeled “Underdogs”, “Monsters”, “The Less Than”, poor and underprivileged, anyone who’s suffering & need a “port in the storm.” I can’t save & help everyone, but I do what I am able. I’ve also learned how to not waste my energies. Once I am satisfied that I’ve done all that I can, I’ve learned to keep it moving. Because you can drown in a flood while trying to rescue people. I’ve drowned a few times, lol! I just refuse to give up😌. It does take a toll, but I never regret helping others. It’s one of the things that make me happy.🥰
People wonder how I can be so loving, share positivity & love…Lol, trust me, it’s better to exist in this space than the one that I was in before. Every chance that I get to show someone Love, is a beautiful thing. Anytime someone remembers how to love themselves & share that? Absolutely PRICELESS. That’s how we change things.
But we have to see that we all live here. Why not make or contribute in making life a better thing to experience? A kind word, helping someone, asking someone if they’re okay, checking on your neighbors, smiling at people, heck! Don’t forget to smile at yourself, feed or clothe those in need, stop being able to send a text to a stranger but if you see abuse & suffering right under your nose you walk by, give that homeless person a blanket, food & make inquiries as to why they’re out in the cold, ask a child or adult if they’ve eaten, don’t try to change anyone try to help, STOP MINDING YOUR OWN BUSINESS, because if we all cared a bit more, what a world this would be. Yes, people trying to help get hurt and have even lost their lives. The irony? Those who fear this, would be awed that if those who helped had to do it all again? They would. Think about that.
This video touched my heart because often no one ever gives a shit about the abuser or the criminal. Although this is overstood, they weren’t born destroying lives & themselves. Something happened, whether we know it or not. It takes a different type of human being to do what they do at “Homeboy Industries.”
One person matters, because one by one, like drops of water forming the oceans, we’re uniquely created & even stronger together.
“We’re All In This Thing Called Life, TOGETHER…Remember?”❤️💛💚
By, Maxwanette A Poetess
“Embrace who YOU are. We’re ALL different for the mere reason of learning how to LOVE self & others.”
“Namastè & One Love”❤️💛💚
by, Maxwanette A Poetess
Having been born in Brooklyn, NY – “Yo, Brooklyn! What’s uuuup!!!” followed by a (((SLIGHT RIGHT-SIDE HEAD NOD)))😎 If you didn’t get that? Lol, please ignore it. It ain’t fo’ yahhh! 😂It’s simply a Brooklyn thang. Old School practice; No matter where we are, we remember where we’re from, BROOKLYN for Life Baby!…That used to mean something, back in the days. You were PROUD to say & to rep that you were born & raised in the BK.
It was a code of the streets, our people, unity, strength, happiness & love seeing one another still making it through the struggle. Shewwwt, people used to lie & say they were from Brooklyn. But those who knew, knew. Nowadays, people try to deny that they’re even from there. “Our Brooklyn” is gone.
How things have changed. Some good or bad, depending on who’s looking. I used to love Brooklyn & swore I’d never leave. Funny how as I got older, it felt like Hell. I miss “Old Brooklyn”, but life goes on & that’s what change brings. But I’ll always love & remember the Brooklyn that I grew up with. But life in NY’s just too much. Heck, I finally left and this time? For good.
But theres also my heritage, ancestry, my parent’s birthplace & living there for 20 something years of their lives. Both coming to America in their own way, meeting in Brooklyn, NY and the rest goes on, one way or another.
Jamaica, Jamaica, Jamaica – She’s suffering the same fate that we go through in America. What this beautiful country used to be has changed. It’s going through a storm. A purging, be it good or bad, right or wrong. Something is wrong in Jamaica.
But is she any different than anywhere else? Not anymore. Once upon a time, one could & would swear that nothing like what happens in America would happen there. Well Jamaica has become Jamerica. They smuggle cocaine, they rape, murder, abuse you name it. Crime exists there just like anywhere else. Heinous acts against life exist there. It always has, just like anywhere else. But at the moment it’s on the rise & in the spotlight.
Many people fear going Home. People are fearing for their lives as Jamaica is going through its turmoil. Now I’m hearing that Jamaica is now dangerous to visit?? Yo! Is whatta really gwan dung deh doe e? Really? Is this now the New Jamerica? What di Rasta dem wen a warn wi bout back inna di early days & people seh dem mad? Yah Mon, yuh zeeit doe e?…If Jamaica doesn’t do something to turn this around? She will continue to eat herself until the island is clear & start all over again. Wether it’s of her own doing or by others. “Jamaica Wake-Up!” If it didn’t work in America it won’t work there. You will get what we get here. Even the innocent will be caught up.
Jamaicans used to “LIVE” to return home on vacation. Buying a piece of land & building your house back home, is something that was instilled in Jamaicans from birth. Taught to see the beauty & value in the land. Now they’re dying out there instead. Not good nor productive. But Jamaica has been changing for some time now. Lost in the not having & the wanting, forgetting that we have ourselves and one another. The power of Love & Unity, “Out of Many, One People”…Heyyyy remember?
My own family cheated my Mother out of her land & house that she paid for; sick or not. Took the piece they swapped it for from her too & left my siblings & I with nothing, lol! They took another piece from a cousin of mine that is rightfully hers by her dead father. I fight for none. Not because I’m American born, but because if land & money causes you to turn on yourself and your own? Lol, Darlin’? You can keep it. I will not fight for the negativity you sold your Soul for. Karma & the Most High will seal & deal with that situation. I curse you not, for you have already cursed yourselves. Greed & lack of love is what is killing Jamaica. Bottom-line.
But guess what? This is not just happening in Jamaica. This shit is GLOBAL. We just don’t pay attention. This isn’t an American, Jamaican, European thing. Lol! Nope, never really was. This shit is a HUMAN THING.
I LOVE JAMAICA. I may not have been born there, but it’s in my blood, my family, the people, the country…”THERE IS NO OTHER LIKE IT!” The Jamaica I grew up with, the positivity of it? Was & is something that shines so bright it’s a huge part of what makes Jamaicans stand out in the crowd…In Life.
No disrespect, but let di Yankee school unnuh😉…“Give us vision lest we perish”…Remember? Open your eyes Jamaica. Look around you. If you continue to close your eyes to what is going on & just follow? Then you will be lead. “TAN UP JAMAICA!” Remain strong inna yuhself! We nuh mix & wi nuh blen-blen! We nuh fallah. AH WE SET DI TREND! Created differently for a PURPOSE. Check unnuh foot or like others, you will be trampled. Tek back unnuh country, Love of life and one another. Where will Jamaicans return to if it continues this way. Where & what will “Yard” & “Home” be? It will be gone.
Do I have a right to speak on Jamaican life? Yuh dayum right I do. I maybe born here ah Foreign. But my blood is as Jamaican as those born there. I feel Jamaica in my Soul, & in my root. I wish America would change too. Love & Unity around the WORLD (((SIGHHHH))), Yeah, that would be nice. It would be paradise. But highly unlikely anytime soon. I’m a realist 😎
Jamaica still has more hope. Those of you who know why & how know exactly what I mean. There’s something very SPECIAL about Jamaica.
Mi dun talk. Luv unnuh!💋💋💋
Jamaica’s National Pledge
Jamaica’s National Anthem
“Letting go of the pain isn’t always an easy thing to do. Many of us can get stuck on that proverbial hamster-wheel in hell! I suggest taking it one step at a time. But the overall goal is to let go of what was & cannot be undone. Instead? Learn, be loving & positive towards yourself; life & others. Change the Negative programming & you change the World. It all starts with SELF.” ~Maxwanette A Poetess
“Namastè & One Love”❤️💛💚
“We are your Mothers, Sisters, Aunts, Grandmothers,
Wives, Cousins, Fiancés, Girlfriends & Daughters. We bring forth & nurture LIFE & LOVE. We deserve to be treated better & decently. A World and or Society that treats women; the carriers of life, poorly? Shall be reduced to nothing.”~Maxwanette A Poetess
“Namastè & One Love”❤️💛💚
Since 1981, Latin America commemorates every 25th of November the day against gender-based violence. The feminist movements of the region, with one of the highest rates of violence against women, coined that date in honor of Dominicans Minerva, Patria, and María Teresa Mirabal, three sisters murdered and tortured on November 25, 1960, by order of the dictator Rafael Leonidas Trujillo, whom they opposed. Years later, in 1999, the UN joined the day of protest and declared every 25th of November the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, in honor of the Mirabal sisters.
November 25 is a day of pain and anger, a day of protest and vindication, but also a day of solidarity and desire to conquer an authentic equality between women and men.
On this day, teleSUR has compiled some quotes of feminist authors and activists from different countries. We want to raise our voices this November 25 because we do not want a setback and a lack of protection of the rights of all women, who with so much sacrifice and struggle have overcome many obstacles.
I do not celebrate it & holidays on a whole except for Kwanzaa.
I simply feel it’s wrong & inhumane of me, to celebrate the slaughtering of innocent lives & be “thankful” for it. To each his own for I judge none, but I pass.
“Namastè & One Love”❤️💛💚
“I support many causes. Domestic Violence (DV), is one of the most important ones. I grew up watching my father, beating my Mother. My Mother always fought back. By the time I was 3 years old, she had enough & divorced my father. But in our culture (Jamaican), beating & abusing Women was the norm. Sadly it’s still in full practice & many fail to see or care to the lives taken, damages done to Women & Children. It can last a lifetime.
This did however have an affect on me. I was never physically abused by any man. Instead I became hardened, defensive, combative, over protective & willing to fight to the death at the drop of a hat. Men were scared of me. This was the purpose to protect myself, but I experienced other forms of abuse;verbal, emotional, psychological & by monetary means. I lost my femininity, and marinated in my masculinity, simply to survive…
These experiences tainted my views of self & life. This poem derived from this experience & finally breaking free from the hold it had on my existence.”~Maxwanette A Poetess