Couldn’t wait to partake in what she was serving. Extraordinary poetry. An air of mystery. Passion. Fortitude. Fire. Creativity. Transparency. Love. Lots of love. Love for life. Love for humanity. And more than anything a deep love for words.

Christina Strigas has blessed more than my social media timelines. She has breathed life into them. Reminding me it’s ok to hurt. Inspiring me to remember I deserve to heal.

Inviting me to freedom and my words to dance…sometimes on the most difficult days….

And she’s incredibly kind….

In her own words…

Christina Strigas, a trilingual, raised by Greek-Canadian immigrants, has been featured by CBC Books in “Your ultimate Canadian poetry list: 68 poetry collections recommended by you.”

Christina Strigas is an author of five novels, three poetry books, and one self-help/poetry book based off of her popular quotes that went viral on Twitter. She writes romantic love poetry in a stream of consciousness narrative prose. Her influences are Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, Mary Oliver, the Romantics, and Pablo Neruda. Christina Strigas holds a BA in English Literature from Concordia University and a Teaching Certificate from Universite de Montreal. She teaches English and French in an elementary school, and at McGill University. She created the popular @ArielPoets along with Alexandra Meehan, where they inspire writers and poets to believe in the power of poetry.

When I held Love & Vodka in my hands, I loved the feel of the book and it’s design. The font was warm and the spaces felt like safe places to rest. I could feel her heart and greatly appreciate her mind throughout each piece. I was almost brought to tears because with the turning of each page, I began to hear her voice strumming within each verse.

She spoke to me as she poured

There’s an inner strength that sustains writers that have embraced the fullness of life.

Moments lived that releases wisdom and depth…

The invitation remains and is extended to you as well. From the library of her life, Love & Vodka is just one of several offerings for the mature palate. Christina recently introduced her latest book Chrissyisms which also available on Amazon!

Be sure to show her some love by visiting her Instagram page here as well as her other sites!

You can find her on Twitter: @christinastriga

Facebook: Christina Strigas Author

Tumblr: Christina Strigas Poetry

Website: http://www.christinastrigas.com

Blessings!

e of @authenticiteespeaks

IG | FB @AuthenticiteeSpeaks

Twitter | @Authenticitee

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

Remember YOU MATTER!

All excerpts and photos used in this piece are the sole property of Christina Strigas and the photographers who took the photos. No copyright infringement intended.

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Blessed day Queen…”

Jomo aka @Morprophet is an integral part of our Instagram Writing Community. A gifted writer and long time supporter of @AuthenticiteeSpeaks, he was the first man to call me ‘Queen’ online.

I couldn’t figure out why it sounded honest when he addressed me as such. Like hearing a hit song over and over again, the terms “King” and “Queen” are favored until the hype fizzles. Overused and oftentimes perfunctory they lose their luster and feel disingenuous. But when Jay aka Jomo spoke, greeting every woman the same way, it sounded different because he was different. It wasn’t until much later that God would give me revelation about his voice.

God revealed Jomo’s strength came from having survived many a storm; some, a result of his own choices. God gave me a peace that he was a gentleman. A kind man with pure motives. A man that God could trust. A man who had earned the moniker: King.

Jomo speaks…

My name is Jomo Moore also know to many as Morprophet through my gift of writing on instagram @Morprophet and to a close few as Murph. I was born and raised in the beautiful country of Trinidad and Tobago which the smaller island Tobago is my place of birth.

I came to America shortly after completing my studies at the high school level at the age of sixteen. Which was one of my best decisions because I’m now the head of a beautiful family. Which consists of my wife, son and two daughters. I’m a certified truck driver trainer and window tinter by trade but I also try to spread my wings in other areas as real estate to name one in which I’m a landlord. I love writing, gaming and the ocean – not just the shoreline but the deep; whether I’m swimming, in a little boat or a cruise ship I feel at home. My choice of music or should I say my favorite genres are Calypso, Reggae, Dancehall, Soca, Rap and old R&B.

e speaks…

Wow thank you so much for being here! I am definitely a HUGE fan of your range as a writer!

Tell me more about your style of writing.

Jomo speaks…

My style of writing. I know of no other way to describe it other than passionate because when I write I put my soul into every word. I know that seems to be what most say but I truly do and so much that I said it all in these two lines in my poem titled Naked “ When you read if you can’t feel me in what I write. I plead with you to be blind to these words that I write”.

e speaks…

What are two of your favorite pieces that you’ve written and why?

Jomo speaks…

Two of my favorite pieces. Queen I’m not sure I could honestly choose one over the other to fall under the title of favorite because I put my all into each piece but I can give you two pieces and my reasons for writing them.

One is called How Did I Get Here? and the other is I Am Morprophet. How Did I Get Here was written as a poem. Which turned into a six piece series. I first wrote which is now the second insert of the series as a lone piece. After completing it as I have done many times before I read it to a friend for his critique. When I was done reading he said nothing. I waited for a bit then said, “say something already!” He replied, “I was waiting for you to finish. What happened before and after? It’s not finished. I know you can do better than this.” So I went on and wrote the other five parts that turned a poem into a short story.

Now the next piece I Am Morprophet was triggered or should I say was in response to a comment on another piece I wrote titled Hush Money. When I read the comment and realized whom it was from I was disappointed not because they disagreed with what I said. That’s their right but because they suddenly became a lie to me. Showing me that their garments were not a representation of who I thought they were but nothing more than a fashion statement.

e speaks…

Who/What influences you most as a writer? What are some of the greatest lessons you’ve learned as a writer?

Jomo speaks…

My greatest influence as a writer is life and some of my greatest lessons as a writer are to never force write or force a piece because if you do it will never be as great as it should’ve been. Always be truthful regardless if it’s your truth or someone else’s because there is someone that needs to come face to face with their truth whether good or bad.

e speaks…

Are you still working on your book? Tell me more about it!

Jomo speaks…

Yes I am slowly. It’s going to consist of short stories and poems. Few pieces that I’ve posted will be included but the majority will be of pieces I have in my vault and the rest which more than a few are still in my soul just waiting to be inked.

e speaks…

And it will be worth the wait I am sure! Thank you so much for being here Jomo! Be sure to support Jomo by visiting his Instagram page!

Blessings!

e of @authenticiteespeaks

IG | FB @AuthenticiteeSpeaks

Twitter | @Authenticitee

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

Remember YOU MATTER!

All excerpts and photos used in this piece are the sole property of Jomo Moore. No copyright infringement intended.

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

I study the writers I choose to feature. It’s important to me to marinate in the pauses between their words. Words are powerful and those who are not afraid to stretch them beyond their original intent fascinate me. Kindra Austin is not afraid and she fascinates me.

Previously unfamiliar with Kindra’s work, I couldn’t have been more thrilled when she was recommended by one of my favorite poets; Devereaux Frazier! I had the honor of interviewing Devereaux a few months ago; so I knew I was in for a treat. Wise beyond his years he has a mature palate and sure enough the strength of Kindra’s gift “had me at hello”.

Kindra speaks…

Kindra M. Austin is an indie author from Chesaning, Michigan, USA. Her debut novel, “Magpie in August” was published in April, 2017, and her book of poems and prose, “Constant Muses” followed in December. Other publications include several poems featured on SpillWords, and an essay advocating for LGBTQ rights, printed in the Mansfield Pride magazine. She is currently working on a second collection of poetry and prose, and a novella (“For You, Rowena”) to be released at the end of August.

Austin has been writing for over twenty years. In 2008, she began blogging under different pseudonyms while briefly moonlighting as a writer/editor/internet radio personality. She’s the founder of Poems & Paragraphs, a founding member of Indie Blu(e), and a writer/managing editor at the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective (Sudden Denouement Publishing), including Blood Into Ink, and Whisper and the Roar. Later this month, she will launch a blogsite as a companion to her infant imprint, called One for Sorrow. Austin’s goal is to one day own and operate her own micro-press.

e speaks…

Tell me a bit more about “Magpie in August”. I’m interested not only in the backdrop and title choice but also the journey that led you to taking the leap from writer to indie author!

Kindra speaks…

Magpie in August is the narrative of Magpie Carey, a young woman on a soul searching journey. Her little sister Renny (Wren) died at the age of ten—she drowned in Lake Huron on her birthday. Every August, Magpie and her mother travel to Tawas, Michigan, to spend the anniversary of Renny’s death at the lake. Magpie despises the lake, and blames herself for Renny’s death. At its core, this novel is about forgiveness, and accepting the truth.

The concept for Magpie was piloted by my relationship with my mother. In 2012, she moved back home to Michigan from Texas, where she’d lived for twelve years. Her return was an adjustment for me, as I had to relearn how to function with an alcoholic mother living within close proximity to me. I began writing about my feelings towards her, and memories of my childhood. It seemed natural to turn these writings into a memoir, however, I began asking myself questions, and playing with ideas: What would someone else have done in my stead? What if my mother had made different decisions? How many others out there have lived lives similar to mine? It took a couple of years for the story of Magpie and her family to take real shape, and I didn’t sit down seriously to write it until mid-2014. I self-published in April, 2017.

e speaks…

As a poet, which of your earlier pieces resonates most with you and how would you say your voice has changed, if at all?

Kindra speaks…

Eternally October

In his dreams, she dances

In and out of shadow and luminescence.

Her liquescent movements are reminiscent

Of a languid flame that once danced for the rose candle,

Which now sits cold, useless—

Dead since late October.

He breathes deeply scents of

Sandalwood and rose, the essence of her hair.

He tastes the redolence of gin and tonic,

And the tang of menthol ciggies cleaving to her tongue—

Senses living, ever

Lasting in October.

He hears her breath, rhythmic

Against a backdrop of fall rain. Soft sputters

Splatter gently upon the cold windowpane—

The melody of October unjust, justified.

Song of amour, ever

Low, ever fleeting…

He awakes in the night.

She is there in the black, low-slung and callous—

Phantom in the guise of a satellite,

Casting her hateful white light through the thin window shade,

Ever mocking, ever

Static in October.

© Kindra M. Austin 2016

This poem was written after a terrific break-up, and published a few years later on Poems & Paragraphs. I believe my voice has since grown steelier, darker, and more self-aware. I now write mostly in first person, as I have shed much of my shame—I’m no longer afraid to speak my truths.

e speaks…

What a stunning piece! I applaud your confidence as you walk in your truth!

So I love your aspirations of owning and operating a micro press but can’t say it’s a term I was familiar with until now. Does entrepreneurship come natural to you or do find that as a creative the need to develop business savvy is inevitable along the way?

Kindra speaks…

The answer is both. And both are necessary to the indie author, whether their goal is to own a press/imprint, or not. It takes an entrepreneurial mind-set just to promote, market, and manage royalties/expenses.

e speaks…

Finally, what advice would you give to new writers? Especially those trying to decide if their writing is just a hobby or some thing worth exploring beyond an occasional poem here and there?

Kindra speaks…

To those writers who question whether or not their writing is more than a hobby, I pose these questions:

1. Do you feel a sense of incompleteness, stress, or any other uncomfortable emotion if you’ve gone more than a couple of days without writing?

2. Do you often find yourself thinking about writing while you’re working, or involved with other activities?

If your answer to either of these questions is no, then you are most likely a hobby writer.

My advice to writers who have big goals:

1. Write. A lot.

2. Write your own truths, and don’t bend to fads.

3. Read. A lot.

5. Open yourself to experimentation. Sometimes it takes a while to discover your voice/style.

6. Grow comfortable with editing.

7. Interact with other writers—join a writing community and build relationships.

8. If you want to see your writing in book form someday, build a platform.

9. Don’t write for accolades alone. If you do, you will lose your truth. No one likes a pretentious prick.

e speaks…

Thank you for being here Kindra!! Be sure to support Kindra by visiting the following sites:

https://poemsandparagraphs.com/

https://indieblu.net/

https://suddendenouement.com/

https://suddendenouementpublications.com/

https://bloodintoinkpressblog.wordpress.com/

https://whisperandtheroar.com/

https://www.facebook.com/kindra.m.austin1978/

https://www.instagram.com/kindra_m_austin/

https://twitter.com/@AustinKindra/

Blessings!

e of @authenticiteespeaks

IG | FB @AuthenticiteeSpeaks

Twitter | @Authenticitee

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

Remember YOU MATTER!

All excerpts and photos used in this piece are the sole property of Kindra Austin. No copyright infringement intended.

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

If you are new here, WELCOME! I could not help but notice the sudden influx of a few new faces! I would love to hear your story, a little about your blog and how you discovered Authenticitee Speaks!

I’ve thrown Blog Parties in the past and found it to be a wonderful opportunity for bloggers to meet one another. Though Authenticitee Speaks has been an awards free blog for a couple of years, I still remember my first nomination! Blog Awards are also a great way to discover great writing. So feel free to share, reblog and invite others! Don’t be shy. Thank you for stopping by!

Blessings!

e of @authenticiteespeaks

IG | FB @AuthenticiteeSpeaks

Twitter | @Authenticitee

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

e

Super excited about this #WriterCrushWednesday featured poet! Unlike most of the writers featured I did not meet this poet via Instagram’s thriving Writing Community.

I can’t really say how I learned of his work. I’m guessing the occasional “scroll, skip, skip, scroll” method of discovery served me well the moment I landed in his world here on WordPress.

Surely this is not a teenager writing with this much depth, I thought. Mesmerized by his gift, I instantly became a fan. Devereaux Frazier is a genius. Yep. A genius. After all that’s how I chose to rationalize the indelible impression he had made.

Scroll, click, click, scroll.

Um wait there’s more? More than a genius? Oh. A genius who had recently learned that he was autistic.

He Speaks…

I Have Aspergers, And I Hate Myself Most Of The Time

So, where did we leave off

My eyes always drift

to the edges of the room

which is probably why everything

always seems to end so soon

Oops, I guess I forgot to say

that I have Aspergers

so I really don’t understand your way

I’m on the autism spectrum

and I hate myself most of the time

I hate having no intuition

and struggling around my peers

While others are deep in conversation

I sit in a corner, trapped by lumbering fears

I hate not looking into your eyes

and as you wonder what’s wrong with me

I wonder why

I hate being the last to speak, the last to be heard

because I hate the crowd, and stray from the herd

to the edges of the fields to think

I hate being so obscene in the wake of surprise

awakening a manic rage

and other times, I cry

But over it all

I hate how helpless I feel

being so unable to control my emotions

and my motions

drive people away

Tap

tap

tap

I hear what you say

but don’t hear what you mean

Tap

tap

tap

I hear what you say

but is it what it seems

What is a birthday suit

Why did he can a human being

I seem stupid and clueless

helpless and hopeless

weak and weary

and at times I’m all of those

and none

at the same time

e Speaks….

Devereaux challenges me as a writer all while invoking motivation to be a better human at the same time. He teaches me and I find myself learning in a space that feels safe and non intrusive for both of us. There are poets and then there are anomalies who embody poetry. Devereaux Frazier is the latter.

He Speaks…

Share a little about yourself:

Guess I can start off by saying I’m Devereaux Frazier. I’m 18 and a student at the Community College of Baltimore County. Just finished my first semester there, actually. I’ve been writing since I was 13, and while major publication has evaded me (for now), I’ve filled the time being published by Teen Ink magazine, Literary Arts Review, and SpillWords while being a member of Blood Into Ink and a guest barista at Go Dog Go Cafe, two exemplary literary collectives. At the forefront of my writing presence is my own blog, An Aspergian’s Chemical Romance. I stared writing for it two years ago with the intention of just having a place to write and talk about my life on the autism spectrum. What it’s become is a place where I dive deeper into my condition, really challenging the “why’s” of my actions rather than stating (rather boringly I think, though no disrespect to those who do) my symptoms and how my life fits around them. I never wanted to be another WordPress diary. My poetry is less about the aspergers itself, and more about recognizing the beauty that it creates. People seldom understand me, and so rather than giving them boring anecdotes and medical diagnoses, I turn to poetry to paint pictures of my existence.

e shares one of her favorite pieces…

The ABC’s of me

Autistic, because where else to begin

Broken from the people who discouraged me

Cunning developed from outwitting them

Dark lines brooding in irritated waters

Eventually becoming open to your company

Forever hating and loving it

Gone before you ever said goodbye

Headed to the outside of your inside

Incorrect politically because I like action

Juxtaposed is male strength

Kissed with emotion fragility

Lined inside a boy turned man still child

Made to write, man of words never enough

Not only written or spoken, but merely dreamt

Outstretched hands for a woman’s grasp

Perfectly aware of their unawares to my truth

Questioning why I just don’t tell them

Resting assured that they already know

Still afraid of what the future has for me

Testing my boundaries every day

Understanding growth is ugly and beautiful

Voicing my concerns with maturity

Warring to find the source of my strength

Xylophones were hated in youth

Zenith not nearly reached

How/when did you discover your voice as a writer and what inspires you to write?

I think it was about 5 years ago, at a Stevenson University creative writing camp. I’d never seriously considered a writing career beforehand, but when I came there and the subsequent year in 2014 I was shocked to discover not just how much I loved it, but how good I really was. (Or at least felt. I could post some of my old poems. Yuck. I really hate thinking about those) I think most things inspire me to write. I’m pretty observant, so I notice a lot of things, but rather than actual objects, I think emotions inspire me most. I like writing from regret and possibility.

Had you planned to ever share your story of living with Asperger’s or were you encouraged to do so?

I never planned to share my story. I mean, as a writer I knew it would eventually become a focal point, but when I started writing people started asking questions.

What makes your heart smile?

What makes my heart smile? This is such a beautiful question…Life. You never know when your time is up…my mom and sister. My mom is best person I know. She’s everything really, and I wouldn’t know what to do without her. My sister is much of the same, albeit younger and with less wisdom but sharing the same desire and passion for truth and right carried out. Juana is an incredible boss and somebody I can trust. Mary and I share a great passion for football, and we still share barbs about how good (or bad) Andy Reid actually is. Shoutout to my bro Ryan too. He got me into airsoft. Feedback from my writing. And anything written by Kindra Austin.

How has your transition to college life been?

College life…hm. I’m not actually “involved” much in it. I’m kinda like go there, do my assignments, go home. I’ll integrate more overtime, but as of now I’m just trying to get a feel for professors and becoming comfortable with coursework.

Where do you see yourself a year from today?

Year from today? Published. Paperback book. Doing book signings and author meet and greets. Going to New York. Going on live TV for interviews. Just telling the world a perspective that enough haven’t heard. Straight A’s. A girlfriend would also be great 😂😂😂.

He Speaks…

The Magic, The Misery

The magic

The misery

Of falling someone

Never meant to be

With you

For you

Forever you wonder

Why the universe hates you

All I’m asking for is one

Just one chance being loved

By somebody special

Somebody true

One to write me and you

In the bark of our long-lived tree

And in the kisses blown

Upon warm summer breeze

Seeing everyone else with somebody

Reminds me how I’m nobody

And knowing I won’t ever

Even though I try

Is the worst part of all

What do you want your legacy to be?

My legacy? A male from my family who really stood out from the crowd. Redeemed some of the things that have plagued our family. Finally made enough to let my mom stop working. Let the world know what life with Aspergers and autism is really like.

e Speaks…

Thank you for joining us here at http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com and stopping by the #WriterCrushWednesday series Devereaux!!

SUPPORT DEVEREAUX ONLINE!

@dev_writes (Instagram)

Or on (Facebook)

Visit his site here!

Poetry, bio and photos included in this piece are the exclusive property of Devereaux Frazier . No copyright infringement intended.

Thank you for being here!

Blessings!

e of @authenticiteespeaks

IG | FB @AuthenticiteeSpeaks

Twitter | @Authenticitee

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

“Before I created you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I set you apart.” – Jeremiah 1:5 CEB

I couldn’t find that journal entry even if I tried. I intentionally destroyed many journals several years ago because I didn’t realize how intensely personal they were until I stumbled across them in a forgotten pile of junk. Long before texts, screenshots and someone picking up the other phone in the house; marble or spiral notebooks and gifted journals held all of my secrets.

And they were safe.

Well except that time my little brother wrote back to me – IN my diary!! “That’s not how it happened!”, he scribbled. Ugh. The audacity of him; my fellow Brooklyn Brownstone Sheltered Creative. As if his banging on the drums at odd hours wasn’t enough.

Nonetheless I digress.

Fast forward to the year 2000. Married two years at the time, God had been seriously bothering dealing with me and refused to let a Sista go. Still adjusting to being married to a musician with a hectic touring schedule; I had just come to terms with my inability to have children. I remember God giving me instructions during a private moment of prayer one day and me being very blasé about them:

  1. Prepare to be a mother.
  2. Prepare to preach.
  3. Prepare to ________.
  4. Write it down.

Though every effort to help obey God was given; that third one still remains unfulfilled and has been kindly rerouted to my eye rolling “LORD YOU KNOW!” file. But the other two instructions were different.

When God said, “Prepare to be a mother” during my private moment of high praise His whisper was so strong I turned around! It was though He didn’t get the memo that I couldn’t have kids. And to boot, prophecies about me being a mom had been popping up so much I started tuning them out. They were frequent, always from strangers and always at the end of a church service or conference I sung at! One in particular was extremely specific…

I remember I had just finished singing and a few minutes later was called to the altar by the conference host and told to stand in a specific intercessor’s line. This was and is still NOT my norm. Never been quick to jump in a prayer line. I don’t play with that. I’m old school Honty. This means I ain’t eating everybody’s cooking and everybody ain’t laying hands on me either! Be done messed around and picked up something I can’t shake; Ok?! Anyway, the intercessor asked me where my children where as though I was supposed to bring them up for prayer too, so I explained that I didn’t have children. The intercessor immediately responded, ” I see three. A girl and two boys”.

You ever believe God for something for so long you either forget about it, question you heard Him or just turn that part of you off because it hurts too much to believe?

Who knew two years later I’d give birth to our first child Kayla; a preemie born 6 weeks early. Our second; Kevin Jr. was a 10 lb 7oz giant born two years later. And then our third child Kyle, the angel I never got to hold; passed away a year later. A girl and then two boys just like the prophetic intercessor said? The agony of being barren, giving birth to a preemie, a full term baby and then the devastation of a miscarriage? God who did I go through all of that for? Because that pain and uncertainty I endured could not have been just for me!

Wait and to think God said, “Prepare to preach” at the same time! He told me to prepare to be a mother when I couldn’t have kids. Huh?! It was like God was running a two for one special confirmation combo that day; so that if one word had been established in the mouth of 2-3 witnesses AND came to pass, surely I had heard God right! I mean I wrote it down in my journal and all but I wasn’t trying to hear that. I wanted to be a mother but I didn’t want to be a preacher. Who wants to be a preacher? Yes. Ok. Music Ministry. But please Lord not… preaching.

I was surrounded by so many opinionated people on both sides – I chose to share it with no one. Some felt women weren’t called to preach, others said Miriam, the sister of Moses, was just one of many female prophets God used in the Bible days. Others could care less but didn’t think there was anything wrong with women being Sunday School teachers, teaching Women’s Bible Study or preaching once a year on Women’s Day. I knew I wasn’t called to pastor a church so I enjoyed flying under the radar for as long as I could.

But God’s voice was so persistent I went to my father in law love who was my pastor at the time and told him I felt called to preach. He was supportive but made it very clear that he’d be in prayer for confirmation of my calling.

I closed out the year 2000 by preaching my first sermon: “Ready, Willing and Disabled. It was right on the heels of a terrible NJ Turnpike car accident my husband and I had survived only two days prior. I saw the front left tire of the car to the right of us dance across the highway before it crashed through our front windshield; stopping about an inch shy of my husband’s face. The glass that shattered on him from head to lap as we swerved across the highway, fell off his face like water. We walked away with not one scratch

I could go on and on but there’s only one reason I chose to share all of this today. It was just gonna be a two line Facebook post about me being my Mommy’s twin as seen in the featured image for this post but God kept laying you on my heart.

As a poet and writer of “tastefully done grown folk-isms”; I know what it’s like to struggle with being called to ministry both in and outside the four walls of the church. It is not easy. It really isn’t. If you are questioning your calling because it doesn’t fit into a box and neither do you, I cannot stress the importance of knowing God’s voice for yourself. I believe if we weren’t so hard on those whose calling went beyond handing out programs, welcoming the visitors and singing in the choir; more people wouldn’t feel shunned or question their life’s purpose.

I’m GUILTY of at one time being ignorant of what some refer to as Marketplace Ministry (non traditional) life callings. I didn’t understand, know anything about nor understood ministry beyond churchdom. I really didn’t. And like most of us until we learn better; I was judgmental of what I did not understand. But I understand now; and it’s really important to me that I’m part of the solution, not part of the problem. Though eventually licensed to preach in 2010 and at that time a MDiv/MSW dual degree seminary student; my life has since taken a SERIES of twists and turns. After only one semester my whole life changed drastically.

Here I am a very different woman than I was 8 years ago. But even after everything I’ve been through, three things have remained the same. My love for God, my love for all races/cultures and my unwavering burden to help the hurting; not ostracize or further damage them because we think differently.

Maybe you know you’re built for so much more. But you have stopped dreaming, praying and talking about the things you want to do because nothing seems to be going right or you lack support. Maybe you’ve questioned your calling because you don’t feel qualified.

Well…

And…

So say it with me…

And then…

‘Cause um…

Love you to life & cheering you on from the sidelines…💫e

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

IG | @authenticiteespeaks

LIKE ON FACEBOOK! @authenticiteespeaks AND @InspirationWithE

Twitter | @authenticitee & @EAInspiration

Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

Photo Credits: My Mommy (holding me), Google Images, Pinterest Sopha Rush, Dharius Daniels, AC. Sparks. No copyright infringement intended.

felt

I can see the face of each KING; some say ‘muse’.

This was never me..not the life that I would choose.

One where pain pierced boundaries,

cue shattered heart and a mind left bruised.

Spiritual arteries left clogged, arms found flailing,

grip on reality gone.

A SOULTIE severed only for new ones to be formed.

The Almighty the Gatekeeper – every time I chose wrong.

No longer haunted or tortured.

If you’re on my mind, I want you there.

To be tempted; a new normal.

To resist; a resolution for the NEW YEAR.

Thank you for every healing word; written or spoken.

It’s because of you my Authenticitee Speaks

and my broken heart’s unbroken.

@authenticiteespeaks

Saturday December 9, 2017 is Day 343

Thank you for being here!

Blessings!e of @authenticiteespeaks

Host of the Inspiration With E Radio Show

IG | FB @InspirationWithE

Twitter | @EAInspiration

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

IG | @authenticiteespeaks

Twitter | @authenticitee

Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


Rating PG-13 to 🔞

Excited about the awaited launch of my new poetry series comprised of pieces originally shared on my Instagram page! I’ll be sharing 10 at a time. Let me know which one is your favorite! Welcome new faces!


1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.

Thank you for being here!

Blessings!💫e of @authenticiteespeaks
Host of the Inspiration With E Radio Show

IG | FB @InspirationWithE

Twitter | @EAInspiration

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

IG | @authenticiteespeaks

Twitter | @authenticitee

Remember YOU MATTER!
© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Photos via Pinterest, Pixabay and original owners. No copyright infringement intended. 

I’m known for giving nicknames and his is “Toronto King“. Well deserved I might add. As mentioned before, some of the poets in this series asked to be featured while others were extended an invitation. Dela, a gentleman who is passionate about protecting my poetic voice was immediately supportive of my vision. 

See, my connection to him is different than the others. He is actually a blogger that I discovered through the Instagram Poetry Community. An activist and fervent writer of the PanAfrican movement, you will not find much poetry on his page. I however, noticed poetic movement within the phrasing of some of his blog posts and would even include him in poetry challenges from time to time. 


His first poem on Instagram: 


AnceSTARS

Weaving in and out of mastering Dream crafting and Dream chasing under the watchful eye of Dream catchers during a storm of nightmares of false prophets, false promises and material possessions on sleeping masses parenting godless children drowning in a hopeless depth – sorry hold up my higher self just told me to slow down and take a breath…….

Watching society scream in a state of vex, as I listen to Whispers from Malcolm X. Walking through the halls of the School of Hard knocks is my favorite thing, ending up knocking on the door of Principle Frances Cres Welsing. Looking forward to extra curricular with Ali in particular but I can’t stay to long. Still have to study the Blueprint of Nkrumah so it travels up my medulla. I know after it’s all said and done our future will shine bright, so I believe Kdot when he says we gon be alright ✊

 

In his own words…


Greetings! My name is Dela, I was born and raised in the great city of Toronto. I’m a proud, fresh Pan-Afrikan Community organizer for a year and half and have a lot to learn. The poetry I write on Instagram and pieces on my blog is imprinted with the love of my diaspora.

When I started my blog: http://www.blackdollars.ca, I thought I wanted a voice to speak out on injustices of Afrikan people globally. The more I study Pan-Afrikanism, I realize I’m just an echoing voice of my ancestors.

And his second poem…

Future Treasure


Can’t wait to be blessed
Raising a tiny lil princess
Skin Covered in the Deepest
Of Mahogany Brown
On her some sits her crown
Lively as electricity
More comfy then clouds
I can imagine the eyes
Round as pearls
Round as diamonds
Dark as coffee beans
Windows to a warm soul
Vibes that whispers bless
With a heart of a lioneess

 

e Speaks…



Thank you for joining us here at http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com and stopping by the #WriterCrushSeries Dela!!

SUPPORT DELA ONLINE!

Instagram: @blackdollars.ca 

http://www.blackdollars.ca

Poetry, bio and the Featured Photo included in this piece are the exclusive property of Dela (www.blackdollars.ca).  No copyright infringement intended.
*CLICK BELOW TO SHARE THIS ON SOCIAL MEDIA & VIA EMAIL! ENCOURAGE ANOTHER TODAY!! BE SURE TO SCROLL DOWN BELOW TO SUBSCRIBE!!*
LIKE/FOLLOW e ON FACEBOOK/INSTAGRAM
@authenticiteespeaks – Blog/Love Poetry Fan Page
@InspirationWithE – Inspiration Fan Page
FOLLOW e ON TWITTER
@authenticitee – Love Poetry Page
@EAInspiration – Inspiration Page
BLOG – http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

Don’t forget to keep in touch & share with a friend!
Much love & welcome new faces!💫e

Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

Additional photos included: original artists unknown. No copyright infringement intended.


As one who bores very easily, I love a challenge. I love…different. Ramel Steede is just that and his pen does more than sustain my interest. As a matter of fact if we listen closely, we can hear his heart.

One of my favorite pieces:

And then there was our first dance…

In his own words…

A native of Brooklyn, NY Ramel Steede became a lover of expression at a very young age. Ever active and sometimes awry he spent his early years with his mother, siblings and grandparents in small town Florida, while spending his summers in Brooklyn where he was born. This made for a great mix of northern exposure and southern hospitality.

Even as a child he enjoyed music, movies and the arts.

After college Ramel spent a few years in Stuttgart, Germany working for an American based technological company. He became fluent in German and traveled through much of central Europe, including Denmark, Italy, France and Spain. He later fathered a child, his only daughter, Qiana, who is American born, yet shares citizenship with France.

He continued to travel globally for many years while working. He found inspiration in every opportunity, before finding other employment in 2007.

A life long lover of reading, writing poetry, rhythm and rhyme. He is very close to his daughter, family, and a small circle of friends. Ramel also has a passion for martial arts. He holds belts in various disciplines and is studying to be a Tae Kwon Do instructor.

He currently resides in central Florida.

Honored he would share two of his favorite pieces…

e Speaks…

Thank you for joining us here at http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com and stopping by the #WriterCrushWednesday series Ramel!!

SUPPORT RAMEL ON LINE!

@pensandpavement (Instagram)

https://m.facebook.com/ramel.steede.9 (Facebook)

Purchase his book here!



Poetry, bio and photos included in this piece are the exclusive property of Ramel Steede. No copyright infringement intended.

*CLICK BELOW TO SHARE THIS ON SOCIAL MEDIA & VIA EMAIL! ENCOURAGE ANOTHER TODAY!! BE SURE TO SCROLL DOWN BELOW TO SUBSCRIBE!!*

Blog | http://www.authenticiteespeaks.com

IG | @authenticiteespeaks

Twitter | @authenticitee

Remember YOU MATTER!

© Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks, 2015, 2016, 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ericka Arthur and authenticitee speaks with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.