Saturday, April 23, 2016

L is for "Look Out Positivity! (A Poem)"

Look Out Positivity! 
(A Poem)
by Stephanie Jeannot

Like a breath of fresh air
you take in after a long week inside the office,
you step out to exhale;
Yes, It’s the weekend!
Yes! It’s the season of blessings 
that I knew was coming.
So let’s get on with it; doubting not even one bit
Singing paeans of gratitude 
and feeling inspired and renewed
because I’m in the midst of the weekend;
a healing for the week that had me wounded
and here I am flowing with this natural rhythm,
overflowing with happiness;
wrapping my ideas around my increase

Again! A yes I release 
because I can say that the sun is within me.
Such a hard mask to contain
when from negative thoughts I abstain
because I realize that good things 
happen when faith is alive.
So good that I’m flapping my wings 
and attaching myself to the sky.
So thankful to be graced with another second of life.
So blessed to know that victory is mine.
So good to be amidst this moment in time
and to know that this day God made, is for smiles.
So to rewind and retry all the falls 
that for which youth was my alibi,
I have come to decide to let them ride
Especially since I know like wine 
I age fine and out loud.
And all that truly counts is the matter of facts of the now. 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

E & F is for Eleanora Fagan, Happy 101st Birthday

Lady Day, born as Eleanora Fagan, better known as Billie Holiday was born on this date in April, 1915. 101 years later, her music and life is still celebrated as one of the best examples of true jazz singing.

Life is beautiful when you can let go of the drama of the day by listening to a song she penned like, "God Bless the Child."

Lady Day once said that when she sang, she would let her voice out in the way that she thought Louis Armstrong would. Another influence of hers was Bessie Smith; but in all truth, her style is unlike any other singer then and even until today. This is most likely the reason why she has influenced so many artists since she started changing the face of music while singing with Lester Young and other jazz Katz in the Jim Crow of the United States. Her appeal was as unforgettable as the gardenia in her hair. And the more I hear her voice, the more I love her approach. 

Happy birthday to the beautifully talented Billie Holiday. SIP! 

Monday, April 4, 2016

C is for Compilation of Black Writers

The National Black Writers Conference which takes place in Brooklyn, NY at Medgar Evers College every two years, happened this past March 31 to April 3, 2016 and featured a multitude of literary gatherings where a plethora of writers presented themselves and their works to the general public, eager to delve into new, exciting reads by black writers.

Of the many that were there, here are three that caught my attention. 

Theresa A Campbell

Campbell is the author of "God Has Spoken," "Are You There God" and the book most recently released on March 1, 2016, "His Final Deal." 

She was inspired to write by the untimely passing of her uncle and writing was therapeutic to her healing. She started writing based on the conversations on her goals and dreams, which she would have with her uncle and which inspired her first book, "Are You There God."

This author of three books is a native of Jamaica, now living in New York and offers to writers the advice that, Rome is not built in one day. She advises writers to not be discouraged and to believe in their work and to keep going one day at a time. 

Also a person who holds on to faith, tells writers that our steps are ordered by the Lord and when it's your turn, it's your turn and went further to say that perseverance is the key.

Uriah Brown

We often hear in the news, a story of a young black man facing abuse from the police. Uriah Brown was a victim of police brutality and since has been living with the idea that white cops are targeting our young, black men. His book, "The Black Bubble", discusses this issue and the disadvantages of this dilemma in America. 

Brown advises young, black men to seek education because education is the key to combatting this racist society. He believes that it takes unity and education to dismantle the system and advises parents to lead their children correctly so that they are able to navigate this world better.

Emmanuel Olawale

It is never an easy thing to leave everything behind and to go somewhere different, and Olawale is no stranger to that. 

He is a first generation American from Nigeria. He was raised in poverty and came from Nigeria at the age of 20 without a dime. But despite his dilemma, he was able to gain an education, pursue college at CUNY College of Staten Island and graduate at the top of his class. 

Years later, Olawale is a lawyer and in the past four years has been named one of the top ten lawyers and has been nominated as a judge in Delaware. Talk about fate! He went from poverty to prominence and his book, "The Flavor of Favor: Quest of the American Dream, A Memoir," talks about his life journey. What an inspiring journey. I tell you, if God and faith in him is not part of your trajectory, you are already defeated. Olawale proves that. 

Disclaimer: I am not a book seller nor will I gain compensation monetarily or through free books. This post was written based on my participation as a supporter of the National Black Writers Conference and as a support system for black writers, only!