issue #24 - moni's top 10 minus 1
March 22, 1999

                                SPRING IS FINALLY HERE!!!

                        *Judging a book by its cover means you 
                         haven't discovered its main character.*
                                     moni (c) 1999


1)  Spring Cleaning - Cleaning Out Our Closets - Author Unknown

There comes a time when we must clean out the closets 
of our life so that we may have room for items that
will enhance our life.

Let's search the closets of our lives and make a trip 
to the wastebasket.

Throw away any hatred that may be lurking there and be 
sure to toss jealousy, bad attitudes, dishonesty, 
complaints, sin, and hypocrisy.

Before you finish, throw away that grudge you have been 
holding against someone. There's room now to add love, 
honesty, forgiveness and kindness-not to mention
thankfulness for all of God's blessings. 

Go on and make room for reverence and respect to God 
from whom all good and perfect gifts come.

Better, isn't it?
Take a moment today to spring clean your heart.  Ask God 
to come in and if He finds anything else that shouldn't
be there, take it out so that you can live holy and right! 


moni:  Padmore, what is your nationality and what does that mean to you?

Padmore:   I come from Africa, Ghana in particular.  I take pride in being 
an African and at the same time being a Ghanaian.  As an African, I delight 
in being the product of the continent, God chose as Paradise, the cradle of 
civilization, a continent with the sample of spirituality and what religion 
ought to be.  As a Ghanaian, I take pride in being the son/citizen of the 
first country that fought for her independence from colonialism in the entire 
Africa and became the haven of all Blacks [not only of Africa countries] 
seeking to liberate themselves from colonial domination. 

moni:  How long have you lived in the United States and why did your journey 
bring you here? 

Padmore:  I arrived in the United States in June 1997, to broaden my scope 
of intellectuality in the American universities.  In fact, my interest in 
Literature of the Black Diaspora [African American Literature] prompted my 
coming to the States.

moni:  Tell us some of the rich history which is unique to your hometown. 

Padmore:  In reality, I come from the Royal House and I am the Chief of 
my community.  My hometown actually forms the Advance Guard Army of our 
traditional clan [the Anlo-Ewes].  We provide the King of the Tribe the
Spokesman or the linguist.  Close to my hometown is the famous Shrine 
made up of an evergreen forest stretching almost two to three miles in 
radius and if you set it on fire it will not burn.  You may doubt this 
but it is true.  It is in this shrine that all Chiefs and the King of 
the Anlo-Ewes are crowned/enstooled.  If a Chief is elected by a community, 
he is brought into this forest for rituals and rites to be performed on 
him before any society can recognize him.  And it is from this Shrine 
that the Chief can be destooled.  Thus, to be from my hometown you must 
be intelligent in the language, customs and traditions of the area.

moni:  Has living in the U.S. presented many conflicts between African 
and African American customs? 

Padmore:  Of course it did and does.  Many instances provided me 
with situations that are bewildering.  On a daily basis, there are 
cross-cultural issues such as male-female authority discrepancies, 
marriage systems, mannerisms, family structure and codes of human 
relationships and behavior that challenge me in various ways. 

moni:  Many of your poems are written about your family or of childhood 
memories.  Is this because you've been away so long, or thoughts of them 
are flashbacks of times once shared? 

Padmore:  In fact, my academic life or experience, and the various texts
that I read in school and college, during my entire academic life, has 
taught me to hate myself--my blackness, as if I am worthless.  But, after
deep reflection and serious evaluation, going back to re-study my culture
and tradition from childhood experiences, revealed a dichotomy--the hidden 
lies in written texts about my culture and tradition.  Thus, I am on a 
journey to engage the world in a dialogue, to revisit and revise the texts.

moni:  You performed a reading of your poems at the Ohio State University, 
and I can only imagine how the audience felt as you took them on a journey 
back home.  What was that experience like both as the performer and then 
looking into the eyes of the audience? 

Padmore:  I have read my poems on two occasions.  One at OSU campus, and 
one at Martin Luther King's Theatre.  It was like opening fresh wounds. 
It brought back tears into eyes, it was like the Civil Right days where
men and women were prepared to die after hearing Frederick Douglas or 
Martin Luther King speak.  I never intended to spark or drill tears and 
I felt sorry.  But that is good poetry because it drills from the audience 
emotional sympathy, and stirs a convivium of memories in society, setting
afire minds to act now or never. In fact, the standing ovation was substantial.

moni:  I must admit, sometimes while silently reading your poems, I'm confused 
because I don't quite understand what you are trying to say.  But, when I read 
your poems out loud and hear each word, I understand the meaning and your 
intended message.  I guess my question is, do you want people to read your
poems out loud so they can feel the message in your words? 

Padmore:  Mere words on paper mean one thing.  But when spoken aloud they 
mean another.  My poems are meant to be performed--read aloud so as to 
capture the soul, spirit, and the psychic feelings in them.  As I write 
my poems, I search not only for words but the aura that the words invoke,
convoke, inspire, carry and conjure.  It is this that forms that canopy 
or shed under which the reader is caught and will dare not go till the 
poems take control of his/her thoughts and feelings. 

moni:  Most of our members don't know about the numerous awards you 
have won, both here and aboard.  Please tell us a few of the awards you 
have won.  

Padmore:  On May 22, 1998, I received: [1] The GWEN KAGEY AWARD, 1998 
FOR HIGH ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT at Ohio State University; [2] On September 
3, 1998, I received BEST STUDENT AWARD IN HUMANITIES at the Ohio State 
University; [3] 1996, WOLE SOYINKA AWARD for BEST PLAYWRIGHT at the 
University of Ghana; [4] 1995, ECRAG AWARD--GHANA WRITERS ASSOCIATION 
ENGLISH AND IN THE GHANAIAN LANGUAGE, EWE; and [7] 1972 through 1978 
all the prizes in High School until I left for College where I received 

moni:  What could you tell us about our forefathers not written in any 
history books, so this story could be told to the next generation? 

Padmore:  Our forefathers were notoriously and incurably religious.  
They identified God as a Mother, who creates from her womb sustenance.  
Myths of creation are feminine oriented. Christianity in Europe came 
from the Isis [Osiris] cult.  In the religious belief or theology of 
this cult, as indicated in the cult of Osiris, was the promise of the 
resurrection, promise of a better after-life, and salvation of the 
soul.  Nowhere in the worship or culture of the African is woman painted 
as a Devil incarnate, a Serpent, who should be accused as the one who
made mankind to fall from Divine Grace thus bringing suffering, disease 
and woes into the world as depicted in the biblical compilation of Europe
[the West].  African religion presented woman as the Mother hence they 
originated the Madonna, the Akwabaa doll, etc.  In fact, I am seriously 
writing on, "The Cult of Womanhood in World Cultures," and hope to bring 
this ideas out for all to see.  When I use the word "cult", it should 
not speak of a disastrous organization as described in dictionaries.  
It means a group of people with one/common belief and will die for their 
community.  The term has recently been misapplied. 

moni:  Finally, what does being a member of the Poets Niche mean to you 
in terms of your creativity and/or the friendships you have made? 

Padmore:  Ever since I came to the U.S, I was on the lookout for a poets'
club, which proved to be a fiasco.  When I joined the Poets Niche it 
became a family not only of poets but beyond that--the human relations
--people who are there for you when you need to speak to someone.  Reading 
other people's poems also gave me more challenges and perspectives from 
which I can look at ideas and subjects.  It offered me a platform from 
where I learn as my writings are analyzed by friends/critics.  And this 
makes me rework on the lines, the words, and more the flow and coherence 
of ideas.  It's great to be a part of the Poets Niche.  And, thank you 
for the opportunity to be a member of this powerful movement of poets. 

Padmore, thanks for sharing with us such rich history and giving us a 
TASTE OF HOME.  Please feel free to email Padmore at (  


3)  FROM THE QUEEN'S THRONE - motivational insight by Shenita Vanish 
( issue no. 4:

Let It Go...

Sunday morning, while under the weather, convinced on Saturday that I wouldn't 
be able to make it to work on Monday, something "strange" happened.  A miracle 

While lying in my bed, head not quite off the pillow, a voice came to me and 
said, "Your relationship with Jeffrey is changed."  "Changed?" I said.  "It 
can't be.  I like Jeffrey."  What sense does this make? I wonder.  "Jeffrey 
is nice.  I like him, he likes me, I've been praying for God to send me a 
husband, he said that he prayed that God would send him a wife.  Aren't we 
perfect for each other?"

Despite what the "Spirit" told me, I called Jeffrey that morning.  He wasn't 
in so I left him a message.  I started to joke and say, "Hey, got this funny 
feeling today that things were changed between us.  Isn't that funny?"  But 
I thought against it.  Instead, I left a generic message; "Give me a call 
when you get a chance."

Jeffrey, a Brother who would call me to tell me that he thoroughly enjoyed 
my company over lunch or dinner, someone who told me how glad he was to have 
met me, someone who listened while I cried, called me before I had a chance 
to call him, someone who shared his dreams, goals and desires, and was more 
attentive than any other Brother who I had gone out with in a while, never 
called me back.  It's now been two weeks.

There was a time in my life when I received these messages and thought that I 
"had lost my mind."  For a thousand and one reasons, I would convince myself 
that "I was trippin'" and go about my business of convincing this Brother or 
that Brother that "we were meant to be together."  My question was always; 
"Can't you feel it, too?"  I've been depressed over "why it just won't work?"
I now realize how much easier it would have been if I would just "let it go."

I call it spirit, some call it intuition, others call it a hunch. Nonetheless, 
when we have it, it should make the world of difference to us. I suppose that 
I ignored it because I thought that I was really in control.  Now I know that 
someone else is really in control.  I'm just along for the ride.

I still wonder what happened to Jeffrey.  I still wonder what was the cause 
for the sudden change.  I still wonder if he's okay.  But, I'm not going to 
worry about it because I was "properly warned".  I thank Jeffrey for agreeing 
to come into my life for the period that he was here.  I thank him for sharing 
himself with me.  I thank him for making me look at myself in areas that I 
thought were healed but really were not.  I haven't given up, but I have just 
"let it be."  Despite all of that, I thank God for giving me the wisdom to 
"let well enough alone" and know that God removes one thing from your life so 
that he can give you something better.  I thought Jeffrey was "da bomb," but 
I'm now more excited by what's next to come. 

Be Blessed!



JO ANN TAYLOR, FOUNDER OF OPERATION ANGEL - Operation Angel is an online 
ministry and support group for women who have experienced the pain and 
trauma of a miscarriage. Jo Ann's goal is to enlighten and inform friends
and family on ways to minister to someone who has lost a baby, as well as 
help those who have experienced such a loss to receive comfort and healing. 
Jo Ann's website is (, and 
please feel free to email her at (

PAT THOMAS is an independent business center owner with USANA, which is an 
international health research group.  Pat works to find others who are 
interested in good health, and show them how they can improve their health 
and even make money by helping me to find others who are interested in health 
and nutrition. Pat's website is (, 
and her email address is (

If you have a website you would like to share with your Poets Niche family, 
please email me and I'll include your website in moni's top 10.   



Sidney Singleton, Brian Henry, Donald Conley, Tyese Dantzler, Evelyn Day, Marilyn 
Marshall, Nadeen King, Taheba Byrd and Roderick Harmon. 

at (!!! 



6)  INTERN NEEDED IN WASHINGTON, D.C. - Erica L. Richardson is an Intern 
Coordinator for Sam Gejdenson. She is having difficulty finding great 
people who would like to intern on the Hill during the Spring and Fall 
Semesters.  If any of you know anyone, who attends college in or around 
the Washington, D.C. Metro area or who will be attending one of the 
Universities through an exchange program with their college, please tell 
them about this opportunity.  Also, please have them send a resume and a 
writing sample to: Erica L. Richardson Legislative Assistant/Intern 
Coordinator, Office of Congressman Sam Gejdenson, 2304 Rayburn House 
Office Building, Washington, DC 20515 - phone: (202) 225-2076 fax: 
(202) 225-4977. 


7)  WOMEN'S RESOURCE INSTITUTE - In keeping with the tradition of Women's 
History Month, ADG Virtual Institute, a subsidiary of ADG Group, Inc., 
will be renamed Women's Resource Institute. The institute, which focuses 
on online training, has been changed to focus on the needs of women.  The
institute's tagline is "Empowering Women Through Knowledge".  Adrienne 
Graham, President and Founder states, "I felt there was really no place 
on the web for women to turn to for help when they wanted to enhance 
their skills or learn how to start a business...I decided to create our 
own virtual university.  Traditional teaching and coaching methods will 
be integrated with the internet learning experience. Virtual learning is 
becoming so popular and it is a way for individuals to enhance their 
knowledge and skills without leaving their home or office."  The spring 
session officially kicks off on April 5, 1999. Enrollment is now being 
accepted for both Spring and Summer sessions, and you can visit their 
website at (


It has been a pleasure to read and feature the OUTSTANDING POETRY of the POETS 
NICHE POETS for the last 30 WEEKS!!  EVERYONE, please STAND and TAKE A BOW.  
THIS APPLAUSE IS FOR YOU!!! Continuing to support and inspire each other with
TOPNOTCH thought-provoking, heartbreaking, "pass me the Kleenex please," type 
of poetry is what the POETS NICHE is all about. Thank you for seeing our vision 
so clearly and helping us focus on making your dreams come true.  This weeks 

Damn... I'm almost 30! - Nicole McLean -
When the mile markers stop whizzing by - Reyhan Wilkinson -
No Really - John Riddick -
Yesterday and Tomorrow - Shaun Cecil -
To My Love, From Your Love - Brian Henry Jackson -
Sit back, take a coffee break, and enjoy reading the poetry of your fellow 
members in POEMS OF THE WEEK 30 at (  EXCELLENT JOB!!!


9)  Thank you for sharing your heartfelt comments regarding last weeks 
poem "The Souls of Tiny Fingers".  Your openness and kindness brought 
me to tears.  Below is moni's poem of the week.  I value your opinions 
and your comments are greatly appreciated.  

much love!!!


	               MIDDLE C
	      (dedicated to George Winston) 

It started innocently.  He loved the sound of middle C.  
Somehow it struck a chord.  He began with middle C, 
followed by D, E, F, G, A, B, C, then back, B, A, G, 
F, E, D, to middle C. 

He practiced without a fuss because he knew he must.  
He never tired.  And, he was never bored.  His fingers
tingled every time he skillfully went up and down the 
keyboard like a surfer riding a wave.

He yearned to mimic the gods, because he wanted to make 
others feel the way he felt when he heard the great ones 
play.  Before long, he knew the piano intimately, stroking 
each key like a lover begging him not to stop.  

Now, the ebony and ivory keys united to tell his story. 
Each melody he played underscored his purpose.  Each 
touch of the keys brought forth heavenly sounds of love. 
Love of mankind.  Love of nature.  Love of simplicity.  
His music captivated the human spirit.

Fame was not what he wanted.  At first, he played for 
his family of four, and who knew it would grow to more.  
Someone told me, and I told others.  People came from 
all over to witness the honesty in which he played, and 
to see for themselves the precision in which he glided 
across the keys.  They applauded and roared "Bravo," 

I was mesmerized by his unassuming manner and how untouched 
he was by fame.  He stepped out from behind the curtain dressed 
in a blue and green plaid shirt, blue jeans, blue socks, and no 
shoes. He approached the piano, sat, and began with middle C.

Monica Blache (c)


(Or use your browser's buttons)