Featured Writer for May

Roy A. Ngansop

He is a recently added contributor to A Cornered Gurl via Medium and as far as I can tell, he uses his words wisely. Innovative and unique, Roy brings something to the publication that I am quite happy to see. Of African descent, he weaves a bit of his culture into his words as well and learning bits and pieces about his world is intriguing and knowledgable too. His poem, Mrs. Middle Lane struck me as incredibly sound, well-written, and a mind-bender. It is worth every second of the readers’ eyes. And now, the feature:


Mrs. Middle Lane

Somewhere between left and right,
there’s space for her.

Perhaps just a thin line of imbalance,
but that’s fine; 
she maintains her stand.

She’s neither black nor white.
Not that she’s confused. 
Wisdom indeed sits in her matter.
She wears neutrality to blend with every colour,
yet her tones never match any other’s.
She’s grey. She’s singular.

She doesn’t have your back, she doesn’t stab it.
She won’t turn you on, she won’t turn you down either.
She understands you, but doesn’t stand with you.
She won’t bring you down, she won’t raise you up.

She runs in between.
Sometimes there is only so much she can care about.
Sometimes she chooses to not choose.
She sees you on one side, your opponent on the other.
She sees where everyone is coming from.
But she would follow no one to where they’re leading.

She doesn’t take sides, she’s faithful to Middle.
She’s Mrs. Middle Lane.


Originally published in A Cornered Gurl via Medium.

Featured Poem of the Week

Lowen Puckey 

An advocate for mental health, disability, and chronic illness–she pens her words carefully but manages to add so much strength to them too. She is an active contributor to A Cornered Gurl and is giving our little community lessons in life through words. The poem that I have selected to feature is entitled, “Lines On My Body.” It is an amazing flow of words and ends solidly too. Everything about it makes me happy to be a writer of the genre, poetry. And now, “Lines On My Body.”


Lines On My Body

I want these lines on my body
showing my journey,
expressing my womanhood–

bold patterns of identity
from a feminine hand.

But there is part of me
that shouts don’t do it!
No man will touch you–

(not this man but maybe the next).
No job will have you–
(not this job but maybe others).

So, perhaps, like that poem about
the old lady wearing green shoes
(or was it purple? or red?)
because she finally felt free
to do so — perhaps, like her, I’ll
finally cover myself in the beautiful
images of my life when I’m sixty;

when I don’t need to care about
the bank manager anymore, or
the boyfriend. Maybe then I can say:

I don’t have a photo album or
a Facebook page — don’t need it.
It’s all on me. Part of me. Come.

See me.


Originally published in A Cornered Gurl via Medium.

Featured Poem of the Week.

Mitul Bhat is one of Medium’s newest users, but his words prove that he has been writing for a long time. Recently added to A Cornered Gurl, Mitul shared a poignant and emotional piece of poetry where he personifies a bullet in hopes of inspiring it to not kill him. Please make him feel welcome, beautiful people. And now, the piece in question:

Bullet, I Need Your Help!

Photo by Art by Lønfeldt on Unsplash

Bullet, discriminate

I beg you, miss your target

We have lost our ability to love

You ‘miss’ and teach us now and how!


Hit the wall by my side

And let my heart beat, for some more time.

I have promised my son

I’ll be there for the school play in the evening

And that’s where I so want to be.

But, I need your help in making it happen.

If you hit your mark,

I’ll fall here, where I had only come to pray.

One more body to clean

yet another number flashing on the screen.

A topic of another debate

A condolence remark

And some mail forwards.

My son will still be on stage

A tear hidden, he will play the part

Fully aware,

in the audience somewhere

is but one empty chair.

Bullet, whether your shooter likes it or not,

The show must go on…


I know you have a job to do

A target to hit and a place to be

All I ask is, do a sloppy job.

The man behind the trigger can no longer think

He won’t even notice

So ashamed are you of him,

You chose to miss me

and hide your face in the wall instead.

You will still have your freedom

from the gun and me one more chance

to spread the love.


Heart beating still alive,

I might be able to change the man, save the race.

But I need that one chance!

To bring love back into the heart

where only hate remains.

For when I do,

I’ll remember

It all started with you.


Originally published in A Cornered Gurl via Medium. Thank you for reading, beautiful people.

Going Mobile

Lenovolaptop
Lenovo Chromebook|Jernee as my wallpaper/Photo Credit: Tremaine L. Loadholt

The 39th birthday is coming up in April and with the success and growth of A Cornered Gurl via Medium, it was high time that I purchased a companion to accompany me while doing work when I am mobile. I have a lot of trips scheduled, the first will be next Thursday as I will go home to Savannah, Georgia for a few days. With the addition of new contributors to the publication, stats’ numbers rising, and multiple drafts submitted for review and publishing, this is going to be my new best friend. I am thinking of ways to keep the pub current and a place for growth and an embracing environment for those who feel as though they are not being heard or they are not loud enough on Medium.

A Cornered Gurl is a read-for-all community, meaning that I do not allow locked or metered paywall pieces to be published in this publication. Since Medium has transitioned to a member/subscription platform, more and more of the work that is curated is locked or paywalled and you have to be a subscribing user to read them or you have to wait to use your freebies each month in order to be able to enjoy the paywalled pieces. I wanted this publication to give readers what they’re paying for to read for free–the same quality work, by most of the Writers they are used to reading. Writers are already noticing the benefits of contributing to the publication and just recently, I implemented a new way of showing my appreciation to those who exceed 1,000 claps on Medium. For Writers who reach this milestone, I will issue $10.00 to them via PayPal or via an Amazon e-gift card. So far, there have been two contributors to meet and exceed 1K claps in A Cornered Gurl. Another one is quite close to this milestone.

I think it is important to show people who are helping you grow that you appreciate them, that you want to invest in their talents. Here via the WordPress site, I am featuring various Writers from the Medium pub each month and so far, both featured Writers have been quite pleased with the results of their work. I want A Cornered Gurl to continue to grow and I want to continue to reach people and touch their hearts. Going mobile and branching out a bit more is just two of the most recent visions that I have for ACG. In my heart of hearts, this feels like work that I am supposed to do, that I am meant to do and I LOVE IT!

Coming up in April, there will be a call for submissions for the Young Minds of Medium (ages 15-25) to submit their work for the entire month to be published on Mondays and Fridays. The theme has not been chosen yet, but I am narrowing it down to my top three topics. I am hoping to get the young ones to write their hearts out about the theme and possibly attract a little more eyes to their work. I am not just shooting for the stars here folks, I am trying to pull those babies outta the sky.

If you want to help us out in any way that you can or fund our journey with the smallest gift, I have implemented a PayPal button (in the social media section of the sidebar) for you to be able to donate whatever you like to A Cornered Gurl. Please know that I appreciate your time, eyes, hard-earned money and all proceeds received will go to honoring these contributors the best way that I can and eventually, send their voices out into the ether where they can be their loudest.

Peace and blessings.

Featured Poem of the Week

Dead Roses

A Collaborative Effort with Barry Dawson IV|Musical Selection: Little Brother Featuring Joe Scudda/Lovin’ It

boxing
Ryan Tang|Unsplash

it is easy to gather roses
for the dead,

words for listeners
 —
you hide in the shadows, content
on stealing what does not belong
to you.

I have eyes in the back of my head,
protecting what feeds me.

licensing age-old lyrics,
no duplication, B.

if you’re stepping up,
ready for the game,
bring your best uppercut.
I gotta jab and a crazy left hook
gearing up for top lips
and pretty noses.

a cruel business, the world of writing.
your heart is on display —
the hungry come in droves,
salivating for something
fattening.

give’em slim fast,
Ensure, or Pedialyte, but
never ever give them
steak and potatoes.

trying to eat the whole meal
in one bite
instead of the portions
we gave you
.

headhunting for
a one-shot KO

will never save you

from your ribcage-rattling,
shook from combos
of famine and body-blows
;

still, you try to steal my soul
like your name was Jim Crow.

not one to hide, you open wide
to gulp down the fatty talent,
but leave the conscience
on the platter,

and then get mad at me
when diabetes takes your sight

as if your mad-hatter,
reckless appropriation
had vision to begin with.

I scatter dead roses
at the headstone where we met.

your fat festers, decomposes,
existing as undead,

but I ain’t dead yet


©2019, Barry Dawson IV and Tremaine L. Loadholt. All Rights Reserved


Originally published on Medium via  A Cornered Gurl:

*Barry and I have been collaborating for about a decade. If I think it, he can bring it to life. If he starts something, I can usually finish it. We have meshed well for such a long time that I was beyond myself with glee to finally see him get active on Medium. Every time we work together, it is fun to see where we are in our work at that moment. He is a great Writer and a dope fiend.