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August 28, 2014

Greetings, Beloveds!

I’m TheLadyBestseller on YouTube, and I can be found under Claudia Moss! Don’t you just LOVE the power and immediacy of the Internet?

Multimedia Melodies to you! :D

Part Four: A Gallery of Pictures from the Lambda Writers Retreat

August 28, 2014

I am thinking we could meet this way for quite a long time, mis amigos! My collection of pictures seem to be growing with each one I post. Just illustrates my love of photography and the documentation of my life and of life in general! So stay with me…por favor!

In this picture, we were on the bus headed to Antioch University, where my Fellow Writers and I would be reading.  What a wonderful feeling to be captured in this photo with two writers I greatly admire, Regina Jamison and  Lucy Jane Bledsoe!

In this picture, we were on the bus headed to Antioch University, where my Fellow Writers and I would be reading. What a wonderful feeling to be captured in this photo with two writers I greatly admire, Regina Jamison and Lucy Jane Bledsoe!

Regina was feeling great before the reading, which she blew out of the water---it was so good!  Her usual island-laced voice took on a Southern flavor and suddenly the Antioch University auditorium became a mansion inhabited by her unforgettable characters, Smiddy and her girl Lurleen, and two dead bodies!  Get it, Regina!

Regina was feeling great before the reading, which she blew out of the water—it was so good! Her usual island-laced voice took on a Southern flavor and suddenly the Antioch University auditorium became a mansion inhabited by her unforgettable characters, Smiddy and her girl Lurleen, and two dead bodies! Get it, Regina!

Me before the Antioch reading!

Me before the Antioch reading!

A serious Regina, a pic-snapping me!

A serious Regina, a pic-snapping me!

The serenity of the campus...

The serenity of the campus…

Through the lattice...

Through the lattice…

Paradise exists everywhere...if you look with the Soul!

Paradise exists everywhere…if you look with the Soul!

Regina is decidedly productive in sunny shadows...and me, well, I am another subject for another day!  :D

Regina is decidedly productive in sunny shadows…and me, well, I am another subject for another day! :D

A view from the hillside...

A view from the hillside…

I'm HAPPY when I awake and find myself!  Ever delighting in the simple pleasure of loving me! I snapped this pic one morning before leaving the dorm for class.  It's a wonder Regina could stand me.  Gotta unbraid my Sisterlocked braids, find my lipstick, quick dancing in front of the window, shut my mouth and quit shaving time so close to the start of class!  But I assure you I relished having Regina as a roommate.  She's the greatest, the most thoughtful!  Amen.

I’m HAPPY when I awake and find myself! Ever delighting in the simple pleasure of loving me!
I snapped this pic one morning before leaving the dorm for class. It’s a wonder Regina could stand me. Gotta unbraid my Sisterlocked braids, find my lipstick, quick dancing in front of the window, shut my mouth and quit shaving time so close to the start of class! But I assure you I relished having Regina as a roommate. She’s the greatest, the most thoughtful! Amen.

Each time I look at this pic, I sigh...

Each time I look at this pic, I sigh…

Alright, Beloveds!

Forget it! I’ve got lots more pics to share, so do remember what I said in the opening of this post. :) At this time, I’m headed to the kitchen and then it’s the gym. Am standing in the flow of blessings today and every day. The house is quiet. Silence is the conductor; I am Her orchestra. And passion fountains freely….

A Poem for Peace…

August 28, 2014

An announcement came, inviting Writing Fellows to sit in remembrance of the Gaza Strip victims and survivors. There would be no discussion, only Silence or meted out words. My decision to attend was swift. I thought to read the famous poem of silence and no one coming when they came for this one and that one, of no one left when they came for me. Regina helped me find it among Google’s treasures.

Then, just like that, I remembered that I was a writer, same as right now I am recalling Gordon Parks and his classic, A Choice of Weapons. Mine, also, are words, photography and love. In an American Jewish University dorm, I sat to fastidiously search my heart’s archery.

If I place my fingers above the keyboard, they dance.  If I think about writing, my thoughts dance.  To marry the two, I sit to soar. ~ C. Moss

If I place my fingers above the keyboard, they dance. If I think about writing, my thoughts dance. To marry the two, I sit to soar.
~ C. Moss

Beautiful words, like an unseen shaman, circled the group. Love pulsed. Emotions swelled and burst. When it was my time to speak, feet suddenly swinging under my chair as though I were five, this was my offering:

On Distant Shores

We stand on distant shores
You besieged
Beleaguered
Bowed in grief
Breathing striated air
Crying tears for peace
Do they drip, too, from a conscious world’s
Cheeks
But—
You haven’t time to wonder
To ponder what it means to be forgotten
Explosions immediate
Babies leaving
Their cries cut short in rising fumes
In shards of lives
Left to drift toward healing
And distant peace
So…
I stand on a shore that
Isn’t as aloof as it seems
Today I pause time
To remember you
To feel your pain
To link souls
To send cosmic rays of
Light love and peace
Ours is a human tapestry
The thread
Loomed and stitched
Creating the Present
Crossing seas and war zones
For how could I sit in this Universal lodge
And not offer my love?

Claudia Moss
August 9, 2014
Lambda Literary Writers Retreat

Part Three: A Gallery of Pictures from the Lambda Literary Writers Retreat

August 28, 2014

Saludos, todo el mundo! I’m back again for round three, capturing in photos and narrative my Los Angeles Writers Retreat experience. I thank you in advance for being here with me, and please don’t forget to leave your mental prints…if you should like.

I couldn't help it!  This bench in the LA sun had my name on it, and like a mesmerizing woman, when it beckoned, I answered.  A wonder I didn't fall asleep, as it was right after a hugely satisfying lunch.  I probably favor a reticulated caterpillar in sun shades.

I couldn’t help it! This bench in the LA sun had my name on it, and like a mesmerizing woman, when it beckoned, I answered. A wonder I didn’t fall asleep, as it was right after a hugely satisfying lunch. I probably favor a reticulated caterpillar in sun shades.

Some spots do whisper.  Here, the flowers summoned me, really.  Invited me to sit and pose, being we were tonally arrayed.  While I and my celly document my whereabouts wherever I am, I do vie to vary my poses.  There is nothing more unimaginative than someone caught in the same pose throughout their shoots.  And I've ever been much too inventive for that!  :D

Some spots do whisper. Here, the flowers summoned me, really. Invited me to sit and pose, being we were tonally arrayed. While I and my celly document my whereabouts wherever I am, I do vie to vary my poses. There is nothing more unimaginative than someone caught in the same pose throughout their shoots. And I’ve ever been much too inventive for that! :D

This is the rear view of the cafeteria.  The path at the foot of the stairs leads to the Sculpture Garden, which was across from the Rare Books Reading Room.

This is the rear view of the cafeteria. The path at the foot of the stairs leads to the Sculpture Garden, which was across from the Rare Books Reading Room.

Jenna and I in the beaming, noonday sun!  A writer in the Fiction Workshop, Jenna was a joy to behold every time I saw her.  It just didn't feel right letting her slip by without being accosted, considering she made my Spirit smile!

Jenna and I in the beaming, noonday sun! A writer in the Fiction Workshop, Jenna was a joy to behold every time I saw her. It just didn’t feel right letting her slip by without being accosted, considering she made my Spirit smile!

More fun in the LA sun! That would be me, my roomie, Regina, Corey and Christina!  Did I mention that Christina's play is running in New York now?  Regina and some of my Writing Fellows have already enjoyed it...two weeks after the gala!  I am thrilled that the production is coming to the ATL soon!  Congrats, Christina! Just beautiful people all!!!

More fun in the LA sun! That would be me, my roomie, Regina, Corey and Christina! Did I mention that Christina’s play is running in New York now? Regina and some of my Writing Fellows have already enjoyed it…two weeks after the gala! I am thrilled that the production is coming to the ATL soon! Congrats, Christina!
Just beautiful people all!!!

On Friday night, at Antioch University, during the Fellows' reading, a woman with a glowing smile walked up to me out of a softly socializing and happily eating gathering.  Imagine my surprise to discover Dr. Natalia Tucker, my beloved sisterfriend's lady.  I knew her before she said one word.  But, riding the tide of euphoria after the soul-stirring readings from all of my Fellows reading that evening, I could hardly settle myself to remember my name!  I didn't vouchsafe to Nik Nicholson that I'd met her Better Half until days after our auspicious hello!  I love this picture of us, despite me looking like I'd fallen into a vat of sherry!  (And mind you, I did not imbibe nada that night...well, at the reading.  What happened afterwards was a completely different chapter.)    ;)

On Friday night, at Antioch University, during the Fellows’ reading, a woman with a glowing smile walked up to me out of a softly socializing and happily eating gathering. Imagine my surprise to discover Dr. Natalia Tucker, my beloved sisterfriend’s lady. I knew her before she said one word. But, riding the tide of euphoria after the soul-stirring readings from all of my Fellows reading that evening, I could hardly settle myself to remember my name! I didn’t vouchsafe to Nik Nicholson that I’d met her Better Half until days after our auspicious hello! I love this picture of us, despite me looking like I’d fallen into a vat of sherry! (And mind you, I did not imbibe nada that night…well, at the reading. What happened afterwards was a completely different chapter.) ;)

I was going for studious again...and maybe a nice legs compliment!

I was going for studious again…and maybe a nice legs compliment!

I read a section of a chapter of my latest manuscript, NOT WITHOUT PASSION.  Like a musician making her instrument sing arias, I became my words, felt myself drift across the podium to the audience and longed to continue reading even after I saw my beloved Kyle give me the four-minute, you've-got-to-go sign.  If I could sing, I'd have belted my excerpt.  And if that lovely little stage weren't so adorably quaint, I might have danced my piece to completion.  Yet as it was, I settled for, as my beloved poet Imani Evans says, "making my words dance!"

I read a section of a chapter of my latest manuscript, NOT WITHOUT PASSION. Like a musician making her instrument sing arias, I became my words, felt myself drift across the podium to the audience and longed to continue reading even after I saw my beloved Kyle give me the four-minute, you’ve-got-to-go sign. If I could sing, I’d have belted my excerpt. And if that lovely little stage weren’t so adorably quaint, I might have danced my piece to completion. Yet as it was, I settled for, as my beloved poet Imani Evans says, “making my words dance!”

A Sun Selfie!  Y por que no?  If they have a song about selfies, then selfies snapped in the middle of the day are quite wonderful!

A Sun Selfie! Y por que no? If they have a song about selfies, then selfies snapped in the middle of the day are quite wonderful!

On my final day in the city, my beloved friend, Kanita Petties, treated me to a sightseeing run!  This vibrant mural was one of the sights that demanded my artistic eye!  We passed it on our way to The Abbey!  Oh my, how I loved LA, but I'd have to make mucho dinero to stay!   (And live the way I'd want to live!)

On my final day in the city, my beloved friend, Kanita Petties, treated me to a sightseeing run! This vibrant mural was one of the sights that demanded my artistic eye! We passed it on our way to The Abbey! Oh my, how I loved LA, but I’d have to make mucho dinero to stay! (And live the way I’d want to live!)

Until I return with another photo spread, be saucy, if you can’t muster sweet!

Holding SLOW LIGHTNING in my palms…

August 25, 2014

Holding SLOW LIGHTNING in my palms….

Holding SLOW LIGHTNING in my palms…

August 25, 2014

I longed to order it before I took to the sky, hopscotching the clouds back to Georgia from California. Fate didn’t cooperate, even though I wanted Corral’s autograph, in spite of my recent decision not to stock personal bookshelves, as I’m a Kindle girl now. Yet undefeated, I remained easy, remembering that I’m also a working Goddess with the power to summon the slim, black volume, with slithering, coiled lighting adorning its cover, to me.

Yale Series of Younger Poets's SLOW LIGHTNING Eduardo C. Corral

Yale Series of Younger Poets’s SLOW LIGHTNING
Eduardo C. Corral

If I ever came upon such a scaly sight, my breath might just vanish like a slow lightening strike, but the magic between this book’s jet covers, I know, would revive and save me. Blessed be the restorative power of words…

I am blogging tonight so I opened it and fluttered its pages to baptize myself in the awe of Corral’s poetry, and this is what snatched me to attention, butterfly soft, demanding I light on a stage of a page from which I could not look away.

“ALL THE TREES OF THE FIELD SHALL CLAP THEIR HANDS

Josefa Segovia was tried, convicted & hanged on July 5, 1851, in Downieville, California, for killing an Anglo miner, a man who the day before had assaulted her.”

I read the emotive poem. I gasped. I sighed. It was unnecessary to read further. Having been raped, twice, by Black men, I, instantaneously, knew Josefa Segovia, and although I knew not her choice, I closed the book to save it for another silent night or a sacred morning in which I could read more and witness all the pieces of myself settle comfortably on a sofa for the experience. The IV from this book to my soul already energizes me; somehow it knows I will seek it and it me in the ensuing days. And when we meet again, like Keith Sweat, I will make it last. Not wanting to gulp Corral’s electric imagery and colorful culture mentally, but to sip it sensually, holding each poem on my heart like a memory I must never forget.

EDUARDO C. CORRAL’s poems have appeared in New England Review, Ploughshares, and Poetry, as well as other journals and anthologies. He received a Discovery/The Nation award and was selected for residencies at the MacDowell Colony and Yaddo. He’s a recipient of a 2011 Whiting Writers’ Award.

Part Two: A Gallery of Pictures of the Lambda Literary Foundation’s Writers Retreat…

August 24, 2014

Part Two: A Gallery of Pictures of the Lambda Literary Foundation's Writers Retreat….

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