Dorothy Randall  Gray

Rage out
on rage
say words
they may
make a difference

to paint
true colors
say to
change, it’s time
round a dance
feet your stomp
arm your fling
rage and sing

Mad Like …

   Zipporah Harris

Mad like a snake being stepped on in the desert oasis. Finally finding a bit of shade to shield itself from a definite dried-out end. Mad like the human startled by this snake, for disturbing a well needed respite from the heat outside and heat within. Mad like the white burning heat scorching all in its path, daring us to look at it, with full brightness, without shielding our eyes. Mad like the scenes we can’t erase from our minds of so many wrongs we observed in the world outside of our “safe” homes, or the illusion of having them to begin with. Mad like the realization that the carefully built “safety” is our biggest lie and we are helpless against it. Mad like the knowledge that those we want to be with the most are truly out of our reach or no longer with us. Mad like no other madness could compare to it all and mad at not really comprehending IT all and wish it was not so now, ever, or never.


Juanita Kirton

Father taught me to listen inside a conch shell

Seize scent from the ocean
Wait for the wave
Swim with flying fish

                              Change a tire, the oil

Mother taught me to stir love into flour

Braid hair             piano lessons

Recite a poem
Drive far to forget

Hold a family secret

Daddy wore stiff white shirts

Drove Cadillacs             
Played cricket
I danced on his shoes

He touched me in the dark

Mummy loved to dance
Dominate Bid Whist                fried codfish cakes      
Strip wallpaper
Church attendance a must       wore gloves

Ignored betrayal               forgot to listen

Daddy was visible
Mummy lingered in blindness

Daddy said, “Don’t tell”
Mummy remained silent
I didn’t tell
Mummy and daddy             speechless

 "To get writing done, one must say no to things

        no reasonable person could ever turn down."    

                               -Michael Cunningham

Got Words?                                                                             

If you've taken my workshop and you want a home for your words, Your Writing Matters is here for you!! is for you      ! If pieces are not too lengthy, I'll post a few every week or so.    Invite classmates & friends to visit your words. If you want comments, add your contact info, name or initials.                 Send work to: with             Your Writing Matters in the Subject line.

   I look forward to seeing your words here.

                       Sharing the same sky,

                                             Dorothy aka Notorious DRG


   Sommer S. Muckle

   I want the beach to take advantage of me.
Let the waves slap my skin
   And the sand grind against my muscles
As the current states it's message to my
    body as I float.
Adrift in the sea, that is now caressing me.
    I want to feel its Blues in rhythm
to the skies above the trees
      hard to my soul.
I take flight like the seagulls
   In search for available morsel

the Waters wash ashore, just for me.
      as I the savory salty  flavors
 mix with swells of shells abundant
       Lying next to me.
When  sea moss and the seaweed clings
     like garments across  my chest
I breathe in , ahh yes and float
           Just to rest.

Cynthia Liepman

rage on
words say
may they
a difference make

paint too
colors true
to say
it’s time for a change

dance around
stomp your feet
fling your arms
sing and rage

Never Too Much
Update 2020
   Eisha Mason

It’s too much.”
--D.L. Hughley on CNN, responding to the deaths of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling     (July 16, 2016)

 It’s too much!
Too many deaths
Too much grief
Too many excuses
Not enough answers!

Why Black folks don’t survive police
Why Dylan Roof gets a hamburger
Why vigilantes get a pass
Why Black folks get dead.

Too many lynchings caught on video
Too many police and DA coverups
Too seldom does justice prevail.
Too often killers walk free.

Too young do our children die
Too many believing they’ll never grow old
Too many empty seats at family tables
Each birthday—a time for mourning.

Too many empty promises                                                    
Too quick to say “Let’s move on.”
Too often—“Now’s not the right time
Still hearing, “We need more time.”

(Damn, it’s been 400 years!)

Too slow does justice come
Freedom can’t come too soon
Too late to turn back the clock
We’ve come too far to turn back now.

Still too easy to white wash murder
Oh so hard to forgive
Grief, rage boil inside
So exhausting to keep it in check.

How much longer must we protest?
How many more kings must fall?
Before those who sleep, awaken?
Before the righteous rise again?
Always violence hangs in the shadows
Never can we totally forget
Sometimes the wailing’s just too much.
Too many times, the pain--just too much.

But never,
Never, never
Can there be too much Love.

The circle’s too small?
Let’s widen it.
The burden too heavy?
Let’s share it.
The way through lost
Together, we’ll find it.

Walls too high between us?
Stone by stone
We dismantle it.
Too much to overcome?
We start where we are.
When to begin?
Here and now. 

Sometimes it all feels like just too much
Sometimes it is too much
But there is never,
Never, never
Never, never
Be too much Love.

© 2020 eisha mason

According to the Washington Post, "...[in 2015] police killed black at three time the rate of whites...And although black men represent 6 percent of the U.S. population, they made up nearly 40 percent of those who were killed while unarmed."

    Deborah Garcia

My mother and father were born with flaming tongues, heavy hands. Short fuses, quick to strike at the hint of disobedience. Their silent anger smokes, still, deep inside me. Though they are not here, they keep the fire burning. The deep vibration of rage warms my vulnerability like wine. I was born from their smoke, my anger often blows rings around my boundaries. You found the right mix of arrogance and smoke. You had done a thing. But I would not walk from you. You dared not look at me, unsorry, and I knew it. But you had said a thing, unthinkable, and that day had broken what was already fractured in me. And that cutting music was booming in my head. So loud it echoed, waking the dragon, and I stood there in silence while you continued stoking your fire. Then I stepped into the arena pressing my face to yours, staring straight into the eye of your soul, until we both new. Stood there with your collar clenched in my fist, until the echoes waned.

Images Encountered OR Glimpses of Falsehoods  

    We Call Beauty
   Zipporah Harris

I was “told”, that we are created in the image G-d, if that is so, how come we look to see whose better and better looking?  I was told that the way I behave, creates an ever-lasting image for those who get to know me. How is it so that some are respectful of me while others disregard me – all this while I am still the same person? I was told by “others” that my community is set to image, chosen, to lead others by example, yet I find many do seek out example but rather our destruction, as they wish not be led by said example. I was told that keepsake images help memory lock happy memories as if alive. So explain to me why these happy-faced smiling images lay to waste at said homes of people who dearly miss the people, in them, for being taken before their time by those who could not tolerate the possible joy of others and of life shared on this planet. I was told that “for sure” children images will bring you joy, so explain to me, again and again, how do I look at vacant, hollow, faces of children living in constant fear of the next blow to hit their faces and bodies at those tender ages of babyhood, toddler-hood, childhood, tween-hood and adolescence. What have they done to those people in their lives, who are not even strangers, to be left marked-up physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually; enduring the pain in silence, as to not invite additional hurt? Where is that so-called open “safety net” to capture them and their care-givers, who do deeply care, and whisk them away to safety, beyond the reach of the person or persons who claim to be their true “care-givers”, who really only care for themselves. I am told to turn to nature to nature images for comfort, so many sunrises and sunsets, light burning in the sky, reminding me of the areas filled with pollution where the living wished they were dead since breathing is already too painful and difficult to bear and help is from no one to “ease-up” the suffering.  Where, do tell me, are the images not marred by the greed of human nature to over-power the other? I have not found them yet. It’s all a hoax.

Flying into Night                   

   Mary-Ellen Johnson

Thirty-seven thousand feet,
God knows how fast
My body hurtles
through the sky
flying into night,
A deceptively smooth flight. 

How subtle the slipping away
of the western light,
so as to escape my notice
that all familiar references
are disappearing.
Pay attention. You are
flying into night.

    Deb Staunton

It's so overblown. It's like the flu. They are trying to control us. Most people will have a very mild case. If you're not old or medically compromised, you'll be fine. Wearing a mask won't help. I'm not sitting home anymore.

   I am bombarded daily, sometimes hourly with myriad attempts to invalidate the truth. The words are released like a barrage of arrows from an ignorant, political, apathetic quiver. They pierce my heart, my mind, my soul. I never doubted the voraciousness of this monster. I never hesitated, not for a single minute to put on mask, to keep my distance, to give the benefit of the doubt and yet it is I who learned the truth through experience, I who woke one April morning with my best friend on a ventilator and then just 48 hours later she was gone. I lost her. I lost my best friend, my vibrant, healthy, intelligent Rina, whose smile radiated joy. Rina who survived 9/11 working across the street from the World Trade Center at six months pregnant. Rina who was my maid of honor as I was hers. Rina who used to climb out of her bedroom window at eleven years old and run away to my house around the block. Rina who shared my secrets, my tears, my childhood, my life. Rina whose house was my second home, whose Filipino family were my adopted parents, grandparents, cousins, & siblings. Rina whose energy permeated my cells, whose presence was an unspoken constant that ensconced me in her love and light. Rina who would grow old with me, gray hair and wrinkles juxtaposed on the flush of our youth. Rina, snuffed out like a candle. And the world goes on — insisting, complaining, planning, refusing to see or hear or know this devastating truth.

   Karine Armen

Be careful brother
I am not a girl any more
Stop labeling me
Marxist, liberal, leftist

Be careful darling
I am mad like a woman
not like a little girl
I am a feminist

I was not born with anger
Boys playing with my nerves
You can't do it girl
Made me mad and powerful

Laugh at me one more time
Be sarcastic again
Awaken the beast in me
I am an angry feminist!