All or Nothing

Photo by Oliver Thomas Klein on Unsplash.

I don’t know how to feel half-heartedly
how to passion
how to love raindrops at a time.
I don’t know how to half
So I apologize.
I am sorry if my sun
burned your skin.
If I came in too hot
or if I am sometimes too cold
a forest of ice
and long blades of frozen grass
bowing under the weight
of bitter winds.
A breath of vapor
purple lips
and chattering teeth.
I promise you that this heart of stone
is really just flesh
learning to beat one pulse at a time
just don’t ask me to half
I don’t know how to feel half-heartedly
I cannot promise not to love you
for I am all
or nothing.



I Was Not There

I do not entirely agree

with the actions of my ancestors

cannot say with a straight face that I would have stood there

In the crossfire of oppression, falling

while being bit by dogs


while being spit on

not with a straight face will I say

that I would have been there

to ask my oppressors their permission

to walk down the street

but I was not there

and me not being there leads me to do nothing

but honor their legacy in humility

I do not know the taste of their humiliation

as closely as they experienced it

my young palate is a prejudiced mixture

of what I’ve seen in footage and read in books

I did not feel the lash

or salt in-between their wounds

know nothing of the seasoning

of stripped identity

of throats closing in on tongues

I know only of gentle waters

the kind that bathes, and cooks and quenches the thirst

I know nothing of the kind that pierces

the skin on contact

I do not know because I was not there

but I can write

like Baldwin did

as a witness

I can write the stories

and un-fairy tale the tragedy

of being colored

to make alive again

a history left virtually unknown

because I was not there

not when Moses died or Malcolm slain

but I can write

articulating the suffering

of the now silent


Copyright©2017 by Yecheilyah Ysrayl. All rights reserved.

Yecheilyah (e-see-lee-yah) is an Author, Blogger, and Poet of nine published works including her soon-to-be released short inspirational guide “Keep Yourself Full.” Learn more by exploring Yecheilyah’s writing on this blog and her website at Renaissance: The Nora White Story (Book One) is her latest novel and is available now on

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.

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.

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!)

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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Truth is not debatable

for integrity defends itself

it is not held captive to the dogma of religion

or held bondage within the framework of theology

it is not trapped inside the walls of College classrooms,

or oppressed by the lips of Baptist ministers,

It wears no stars of David

Sings no Islamic melodies

Truth is not religious

And yet is no atheist

Truth has always been

And always will be

It is neither canonized

nor done away with

not stolen away

or traded amidst the bowels of slave ships

truth is not lynched,

nor shackled against the cages of fear

it refuses to shake hands with deception,

and will never embrace the arms of uncertainty

because truth is always certain

It is sure to be like nothing you can ever imagine

but be everything you’ve ever hoped for

Truth is limitless

And humble

Needs no acknowledgement

And yet wears a crown

Truth needs no confirmations

and yet rules

wears no flowing garments

Is lowly

and yet royal

accepted by the faithful

and resisted by those who are afraid.

My Poems on Soundcloud

I am back on Soundcloud and am in the process of uploading audio poetry of the poems I’ve published to this blog. Follow me HERE and listen to the poems that you’ve already liked and loved. This is also my opportunity to introduce my voice to those of you who have never heard me speak.

Yes, I am shy and those of you who meet me in person will see for yourself. However, I was inspired to do this for two reasons:

a. I went through the recorder on my phone and noticed I had recorded poems that were just sitting there.

b. Because I have poems just sitting there I figured they aren’t doing any good. The least I can do is upload them and try reaching as many people as I can. Even if it’s just one person I hope that these pieces are a blessing to your life.

I have uploaded several but more are on the way. Like I said, I am uploading audio versions of all the poems I’ve published to this blog so it will take some time to get through them all. Consider this a virtual Open Mic Night  ; )



– EC