New Beginnings

What happens when the words

are carried on the backs of angels

and thread themselves like strings from your heart

to the edge of your fingertips

like consciousness translated into poetry

a spiritual essence poured out only to be confined

and restricted to the page that binds them

what happens when newness fills you to the brim

forcing you to walk into new beginnings

that this flesh has yet to verbalize properly

I have not the answers to these questions

not yet

just inklings of miracles

from black colored ink

and fire coated passion

on white paper.

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Yecheilyah’s First Annual Poetry Contest – Grand Prize Winner!

Hey Guys!

I am honored to introduce to you our Grand Prize Winner of my first poetry contest!

First, a special thank you to Colleen and Lisa for helping me to put this together. With my schedule, I could not have done it without you two! Family, please go ahead and follow their blogs. You WON’T be disappointed!

Follow Lisa Here

Follow Colleen Here

Next, I would like to thank everyone who entered as well as those of you who shared this contest. It is not easy to “stand” up here and do something like this so thank you for your support.

Drumm Rollll…

Congratulations to Merril D. Smith for her poem “Zora Neale Hurston.”

Not only did it touch on our theme, but it embodied so much of Zora that I felt like if I didn’t know who she was before, I did now. Here’s what Colleen had to say:

“The author captured the essence of Zora and her strength to fight for the rights of African American women as if she was able to channel her bright spirit through the written word. Splendid imagery and descriptions. When I close my eyes, I can see Zora in all her glory!”

My favorite lines are:

“…her soul crawls out

from its hiding place

time and distance cannot shrink

her words…” – Colleen Chesebro

Whoop! Merril, here’s what you’ve won!

  • Amazon Giftcard
  • Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke (hardcover)
  • From When I was a Black Girl by Yecheilyah Ysrayl (paperback)
  • And Still, I Rise by Maya Angelou (paperback)
  • Your Poem on this Blog
  • Social Media Support

Please tell us a little bit about yourself:

Author Photo: Merril D. Smith.

MDS: Thank you so much, Yecheilyah Ysrayl, Colleen Chesebro, and Lisa W. Tetting! I am honored to have been selected as the Grand Prize Winner for this poetry contest.

My name is Merril D. Smith. I live in National Park, NJ, which is a small borough right across the Delaware River from Philadelphia. I’m an independent scholar with a Ph.D. in American history, but my blog is mostly a poetry blog. Poetry is my creative outlet, though it is something I’ve come to only within the past few years. Perhaps I needed some life experience and time to reflect, but now my muse says, “write poetry.”

Do you have any poetry collections out Merril?

MDS: I don’t have a poetry book out yet, but it’s coming! I’m currently finishing up two reference books on rape. My other books are available on Amazon and other sites.

Before we get to your poem, please tell us a little bit about it. What inspired this piece?

MDS: The theme of the poetry contest was the Harlem Renaissance. I chose to write about Zora Neale Hurston because I think she was a brilliant and fascinating woman. She lied about her age (saying she was younger than she was) so that she could finish high school. Then she went on to study anthropology with Franz Boas, and she chose to do fieldwork on Afro-American folklore. She was said to have made an entrance when she entered a party, and in the photos, I’ve seen of her, she’s often wearing a hat. She definitely had a way with words, so I used some of her lines within the poem. Though she won some acclaim in her life, she did not earn wealth, and she died in poverty. Alice Walker is credited with “rediscovering” Hurston and paid to have a grave stone placed on Hurston’s unmarked grave.

Once again Merril, thanks so much for participating in our contest and sharing your heart with us. Without further ado, everyone we give you:

“Zora Neale Hurston”

by Merril D. Smith

 

She makes an entrance

(not tragically colored)

hat on head–

red, blue, black—

she sets back,

ready, life of the party,

her oyster knife sharpened

dissecting, uncovering

(rediscovering)

life

in tales of people, animals,

the divine, the devil,

people without souls

animals who talk,

eyes watching God

she writes of birds and bees

and peach blossoms in the spring,

of love, romance,

women and men

of rabid dogs

and jealousy,

she dies in poverty

almost

(not quite)

forgotten,

her soul crawls out

from its hiding place

time and distance cannot shrink

her words,

those she left behind

to flow like the sea

to meet our shores

 

©2017 Merril D. Smith


You can reach Merril at the social media links below. Go show her some love!

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Merril-D.-Smith/e/B001HOHXH6

Blog: https://merrildsmith.wordpress.com/

Twitter: @merril_mds

Instagram: mdsmithnj


 

 

This poetry contest is sponsored by Yecheilyah of Literary Korner Publishing and the release of Renaissance: The Nora White Story (Book One). Pick up your copy of Renaissance today. Click here.

The Right Poem

When the right poem is born it is all feeling. Taste and touch and nourishment. All heart and aching and lifting. Poetry is a revolution with a profound sense of strength. When the right poem arrives I notice it instantly. It is all moving like earthquakes so powerful that it breaks down mental barriers and knocks ignorance off Richer Scales. The right poem is not merely the ability to paint pictures with words. The right poem is a full manifestation of the heart. A complete contextualizing of the soul. The right poem is my entire body into words. Every piece of flesh, every tingling nerve. A spiritual essence poured out on the page.

Yecheilyah’s First Poetry Contest: Announcing the Runner-Up Winner!

Hey Guys! The Runner-Up in our First Annual Poetry Contest is Live!

Congratulations to Jau’Nelle for her poem ““His Brooklyn Song (Where I left my Heart).” Be sure to stay tuned for the Grand Prize Winner! Her poem is amazing and you don’t want to miss it.

Important: The Grand Prize winner will be announced on this (PBS) blog.

✨Colleen Chesebro✨The Faery Whisperer ✨

Good Morning!

I am so excited that Colleen has given me the keys to the house once again and I’d like to take this time to thank her for allowing me to host my first contest on her blog.

Additionally, I’d like to thank each of you for your support of our Poetry Contest, those of you who entered and those of you who wanted to enter but did not have the opportunity to do so. Know that, with your support, we’d like to host this contest at least once a year so no worries, there will be other chances! Finally, thank you to everyone who shared the original post across social media, reblogged, etc. We could not have done this without you.

Drumm Roollll…

As we stated, depending on the number of entries, we will have some runner ups. While there can only be One Grand Prize Winner, today…

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Queasy

Photo by Oli Dale on Unsplash

 

Change is a sickly feeling

a nervous-like anxiety

fear of the unknown beckoning for patience

to wear itself  thin

stomach fluids swirl in the belly of futures

unknown

and yet I know the power of self-examination

of mirrors and of light

will require me to change

or let go completely

to strengthen

and to build up

to reject what once felt as close as breath

in my mouth

now a violent release of what had been

for what will be

who knew

new beginnings

could be so

queasy.

Poetry Contest – Closed

Photo by Jan Kahánek on Unsplash

First, I want to thank everyone who supported this contest. Whether you re-blogged or shared this across social media or participated, thank you.

I want to give a special thanks to Colleen Chesebro for allowing me space on her blog to host this and for promoting it in her weekly poetry features.

As you all know I have just released a new book and am just getting in from travel. It has therefore been a challenge to promote this contest and the book simultaneously. While I did not time the contest well, I am excited to have had the opportunity to do it and look forward to reviewing the entries and announcing our grand prize winner.

The contest is now officially over. I would extend it but honestly, it is not a good time. There are some family things to take care of and more travel in the near future. However, this is the first of many. My hope is to do this at least once a year, introducing to you more and more talented artists.

Until next time,

Peace and hair grease 🙂

ANNOUNCING: Yecheilyah’s 1st Annual Poetry Contest

Calling ALL Poets!! I am hosting my first poetry contest on Colleen’s blog. Stop through for details. (Yes, you can win prizes!)

✨Colleen Chesebro✨The Faery Whisperer ✨

good news

Hi, everybody! I am excited to share with you Yecheilyah’s First Annual POETRY Contest, right here on my blog. Read the instructions below, because you are going to love this!!

From Yecheilyah:

“It’s no secret I love poetry. In fact, my entrance into Indie Publishing began this way, with a collection of poems. I have been performing since High School and writing them since middle school. I’ve traveled to perform, entered contests, and have been filmed. Remember that you can listen to my poems and follow me on my new Soundcloud page HERE.”

“I have wanted to do this for a long time and Renaissance: The Nora White Story is the perfect excuse. In my upcoming release poetry plays a significant role. Nora meets such famous poets as Langston Hughes and even gets to recite a poem of her own. For this, to celebrate the release of book one in the…

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