Strutting In The Sun

Vol. 8: End of the Year Good Things

Kelis Photo by Michael Mora

Hello, lovelies! We made it through another year here on Medium and most of us still have so many stories to tell. To those of you still following us, still reading what we have to share and still enthralled by every click of each post, we appreciate you. Surely, we would not be who we are here at A Cornered Gurl if it were not for each of you. A heartfelt THANK YOU does not seem like enough, but it is what we are gifting as well as our words.

This year, in January, we launched the opening of ACG up to every writer on Medium and since then, milestones upon milestones have greeted us. Currently, we have 1,131 followers and we are comprised of 159 writers with 75 of them in an active status here on Medium. Our theme–our dedication within this publication is to give you writing that is brutally honest, vulnerable, and relative & relatable. We are writers who, “Break out of the Box” and this is shown with every piece published in A Cornered Gurl.

The last few months leading up to the end of this year gave us the last Young Minds of Medium challenge with a theme of “How Do You Sing The Blues?” We also introduced our youngest contributor, Niharika Gursahani who is currently flourishing here on Medium as well as maintaining her readership on WordPress.

Two pieces I’d like to shine a little light on as contributions to this challenge are:

Anto Rin, Women are from Venus

Braden Turner, Southern Fried Circuits

The last challenge for all writers was this month with the following theme: “How Do You Like Your Love?” We had nineteen entries and I was more than pleased with each submission. Everyone was not only creative in using three words or multiple sets of three words to share how they like their love, but I also felt a sense of togetherness monitoring this challenge. I want to highlight three of those entries:

Willow T. Lovelace, Endless Endearment

Subo, Love

Rachel B. Baxter, How Do You Like Your Love?

I want to take this moment to recognize some of our newest contributors as they have shared poignant work with us toward the end of this year and I am certain next year will welcome the same: Roxana Ștefan, Esther Spurrill-Jones, Christie Alex Costello, MBA, Stephen M. Tomic, Sarah E Sturgis, and Bella Linda.

In A Cornered Gurl, we are built on community. It is important for us to not only encourage one another but to help each other grow and we are doing that by exploring many of the facets of writing available to us. The goal I envisioned, as we neared the end of this year, was to be able to present one of the local homeless shelters here in my area of North Carolina with a check or an electronic payment that would not only go toward providing meals but also a place to sleep or rest for a few nights too for those desperately in need. We did that. The amount donated to Samaritan’s Ministries was $75.00.

Not only did we raise enough funds to contribute in the fight to rally against homelessness in this area, but we were also able to gift St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital $90.00. Their remarkable care, professionalism, and willingness to help children diagnosed with cancer for absolutely no cost to their parents, blows my mind.

I have friends and family members who still want to donate and will do so and have been informed that their funds have been and will be placed in the ACG account to go toward next year’s charity donations.

Here in ACG, small monetary rewards distributed throughout the year to twenty-four writers for meeting various milestones in or outside of the publication added up to $262.00. I am overjoyed that we have been able to meet most of our goals and exceed in others.

Next year’s challenges will be totally different from this year’s and they will force us to use our thinking abilities as creatives and truly break out of the box. Stay tuned.

To anyone who has given their time, money, efforts, and support to this publication, I am honored. I cannot thank you enough and words do not seem to be justifiable given the accolades placed upon us. I look forward to what 2020 has in store and I hope you do too.

And now, a little Kelis: Get Along With You

Peace and blessings and a very Happy New Year to you!


Originally published in A Cornered Gurl via Medium.

 

The Universe, Baby

Alicia Espinoza via Mixkit.co

Musical Selection: Art of Noise|Moments in Love

The Universe, Baby

Flash Fiction

She tells her, “You are the Universe, baby. The perfect galaxy. The reason I love the way love feels on me.” She watches. She stares. She loves the way love feels on her too but not everyone is eager to see them flaunting their version of love outside the closet.

“Alice and the rabbit hole, baby. A neverending journey. A hunt for sustenance. Blazing moonlight over cherry trees. I’d never chop you down.” She’s still professing her undying love for her. The charm that lifts itself from her skin and lands on her lips is a ten. A twenty if anyone’s counting. She’s tipping the scales tonight.

“Blue envy. Gray passion. Red all over and yellow inside. I bleed you.” She smiles. She fidgets with her jean jacket, twirls her bossy curls around her index finger, and sets a giggle free. “I would tip a mountain over, my love, if you were on the other side of it.”

Her eyes widen. She steadies her ears on every word leaving her lover’s lips and finally speaks . . .

“If I am all of this you claim, why are we still hiding? Does your mother know my name? Are your sisters aware that roommates is a loose term for what we really are? Did you tell your brother what we do when you’re “on a business trip?”

Silence is thick in the room. She slices it with her words. “The Universe never hides, baby. The Universe doesn’t have to.” She walks away.

Her lover follows her to the kitchen. She watches her hips as they sway. She’s in a trance. Her eyes log her every step. She pulls a thought from the air and shares it with her . . .

“But the Universe knows that living in harmony with everyone takes many sacrifices. It understands that offering itself up on a platter is not how one gets full. Please, let me take small bites until I am ready for more.”

A few pots clang in the kitchen. She’s rummaging through old utensils, searching for a spatula. Her lover’s voice lingers in her ears — on her lips. She stands back on bowed legs and reminds herself . . . reminds her lover . . .

“I am the Universe, baby.”


Originally published in A Cornered Gurlvia Medium.

a constant gift

THE GIFTS THAT KEEP ON GIVING

A Constant Gift

an experiment

Inspired by Pentatonix’s “Little Drummer Boy” and The Harry Simeone Chorale’s “Do You Hear What I Hear?


said the spirit of the little drummer boy,
“give me a constant love,
one that never fails — cannot die.
will not die.
give me a constant love for
women, men, children; all God’s
creations . . .
from every corner of the globe
to every numbered nation.”

little drummer boy beats his drum,
pounds away the evil from
cold hearts and channels
peace from the deepest and
darkest places.
the sound of every
pound coating the eardrums of
lawmakers, policy protectors,
dictators, and naysayers —
the people enveloped by
oneness.

said the heart of the little drummer boy,
“give me the tired and unrecognized,
the harmed and abandoned,
neglected and made wayward and
I will offer them a safe place
to reside.
for no human being deserves
any less — a home where
love will never be
an empty nest.

little drummer boy taps his drum,
calls the ancestors from far
and wide, showers them
with his listening ears,
tools for every guide.
he knows the trials.
he knows the tribulations.
from our family ties both
dead and alive, we should be
as one.

said the mind of the little drummer boy,
“give me every reason to
continue to believe in
a constant love.
the free gift —
no purchase necessary.
just open your heart
a little wider.
open your eyes wider too.
let love, a constant love
take over and consume you.”

and when we can stand
side by side, hands held,
voices shouting in unison for
an everlasting gift that can
only keep on giving,
a new world will be
revealed.

how to get there, little drummer boy?
“I’ll start, then you, and
you, and you too.
this is the gift of constant love.


Originally published in Our Human Family via Medium. The link shared is a friend link and allows you to read the piece via Medium at no cost to you as this is behind Medium’s paywall.

Young Minds of Medium Featured Writer: Aaska Aejaz

Aaska Aejaz

This young one popped up on the scene at Medium out of the blue one day, specifically in my feed, and she has been doing that ever since. She is passionate about changing the world–one small act at a time and believes in love, the gift of humanity, staying positive, and writing. She responded to the Young Minds of Medium “How Do You Sing The Blues” challenge by introducing a way to shift from sadness to happiness through music and dancing. Below is her contribution.


Young Minds of Medium Blues Call “How Do You Sing the Blues?”

Let it be: Just Dance — Break the Floor

Photo by Leon Liu on Unsplash

I say . . . Let it be,
Come and dance
Break the floor!
Life is just as it is,
Whenever my heart melts
Whenever my eyes flow
Whenever I feel the obstruction
to inhale the oxygen
I tried to tell myself

Life is just as it is —

It happens in this world,
If there is darkness
If there is anguish
Don’t cry —
There will be morning
after night
There will be happiness
after sorrows and pain
Just be patient . . . let it be

Come and dance
Break the floor!
There will be your weather
There will be your voice
There will be your day
There will be your time!
Just laugh now —
turn on the music

Let’s forget every sadness
Come and dance
Break the floor!


A few years ago, I didn’t know how to handle the chaos of my mind or how to sing the blues? I was an empty page — as blank as every jotting written on a wet paper. My problem was that if I got hurt on one thing, I had started to open all the doors and windows of memories — trust me, it got worse sometimes. My depression had started to increase with the degree of pain, and I’d begun to lose everything.

But, you know, sometimes we are just walking on the road and we meet some people side by side . . . We start to converse, they meet us like travel partners for a very short period of time. And in this short time, we learn some major lessons on how to live a life or sometimes we learn how we can do it! As well as, I met a friend on my travel journey, I call yet my friend even she is not with me now and I don’t know where she is in this world. But, luckily, I collided with her in the past.

She taught me a few lessons, she edified me, don’t worry, if you have a trouble, in this world, everyone faces problems, everyone has their part of sorrows, some has more — some have a few, but the key you should have in your pocket where you could lock your all pain and worries.

The key is how to neglect the dark side of your life and how to be a positive one, basically, just pretend you are okay with that, this is not a big deal and if you want to do big things — to remind yourself. Sometimes big problems also are part of big dreams. Just turn on the music loud and dance like nobody’s watching you, it sounds funny, but let me tell you — it will increase your heart rate, improve physical tenacity, mental performing, general and psychological prosperity, self-confidence and self-esteem, social capabilities and these all things will automatically make you feel happy.

And you don’t believe, I do the same — whenever I’m stuck in the chaos, I just come at home and turn on the music and dance even if I am not a good dancer. I don’t know how to dance because I never did before meeting her.

I know this is so hard to face the difficult times of our life, but it is a really good recipe to ignore the negativity or hurting feelings which we get from depression. All I can suggest you is — don’t think you are alone in this world, just dance and break the floor. Trust me for once, it will work. 🙂


Originally published in A Cornered Gurl via Medium.