Issue #56 - moni's Top 10 E-ZINE 
Part 2 of 2 (6 through 10)
(The Poets Niche Official Newsletter)
Monday, July 3, 2000


                     ** HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY **

Part 2 of 2

10 - moni's POEM OF THE WEEK


Begin emailing me at ( because my old email address
( will be disconnected as of July 31, 2000.


Please remember to submit any and all non-poetry items to ME ONLY at
( to be included in THE 10!


HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY to our Aries, Taurus, Gemini and Cancer brothers
and sisters, especially Flite (who turned 21 in March), and Shaun Cecil
whose age is a secret between he and God (but rumor has it it's one year
shy of 45).  From your Poets Niche family and friends, continued BEST


In February, bams and bear traveled to New Orleans for Mardi Gras. 
Before hitting the streets with the rest of the THROW ME SOMETHING MARDI
GRAS GOERS, they fueled up on moni's homestyle boiled seafood fest --
crawfish, shrimp, crabs, potatoes, corn, and turkey necks.  As much as I
love bams and bear, I must admit that I did not participate in the Mardi
Gras madness with them.  Instead, we synchronized our watches, and I
dropped them off and picked them up in the middle of all the revelry.  If
you've never been to Mardi Gras, just ask bams and bear to recount their
French Quarter their experience.  It might sound a little like this: "Did
you see that?"  "Did she just show her boobs for a cheap pair of beads?" 
"If you're looking for me, I'm over here throwing up." "Where did all
these people come from?"  "It's only 4:00 in the morning and I'm still
standing.  I think???"  Now bams and bear can truly say "BEEN THERE, DONE
THAT!!"  I look forward to seeing you guys NEXT YEAR!!!


A WELL-DESERVED JOURNEY HOME -- In March, Padmore traveled home to Ghana
to rejuvenate his soul with the warmth of his family's smile.  He said it
was a lovely trip and the experience is worth remembering.  "I had a good
time with my family who really missed me.  I never knew how much my
company was missed by many of my acquaintances until I landed in Ghana
amid a herald welcome. Ghana has changed considerably.  The road
infrastructure has improved like some cities or towns in the US (some
flyovers, four to six lane-roads etc.) alongside with the growth of
estate housing projects. The presence of European goods on the Ghanaian
market is also on the ascendancy. But the value of the currency is so
low, as compared to the dollar.  Seriously, Ghanaians wear masks to hide
the tears and the scars left by the economic devastation on their cheeks.
Anyway, Ghanaians are living by magic. My wife and kids really missed me. 
They exhibited this and on the day of my departure.  It was tears for a
rain.  Well, I am back to school. It is my hope that all goes well with
me this quarter. Just like my fellow Ghanaians, I will wear a mask to
make sure I achieve the best for myself in this quarter."  

I really encouraged Padmore to travel home this year because his soul
truly hungered for that "THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE HOME" reunion.  Dearest,
please remember to thank your family for the beautiful gift they sent me. 
Words will never be able to express my tears of joy because of the
generosity your family has shown me.  They will continue to remain in my
prayers and forever in my heart.  HUGS &KISSES, especially to your Wife
and Mother!!!  Please feel free to email Padmore your comments,
encouragement and love at (


TRYING TO FIND AN OLD FRIEND -- Cynthia Green is looking for an old
friend -- writer and chef, Danella Carter.  Danella has written several
cookbooks including, "Down-Home Wholesome: 300 Low-Fat Recipes from a New
Soul Kitchen." Her short story "Quasi Snags A Homeboy," (which by the way
is one of the best short stories I have ever read) was featured in The
Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown's spring 1992 issue of Shankpainter
32.  If you have any information on how Cynthia can locate Danella
Carter's current mailing/email address, please email her at


A POETRY FORUM CLEARINGHOUSE -- Many of you have requested information on
various poetry forums throughout the country.  For example, if you're in
New Orleans, New York, Atlanta, Detroit, Indiana, etc., and wanted to go
to an open mic performance in one of those cities, where would you go? 
Therefore, please email ME ONLY at ( with the
locations you consider the hot spots in your city for poets to enjoy
hearing and performing the spoken word.  Please include the name, 
address, telephone number and/or web site information.  Once this
information is gathered, I will include this information on our web site. 
That way, the next time you go to Great Barrington, MA, you'll know where
to go to network with other fellow poets!!!


didn't want to just leave without saying goodbye to all of you.  Some of
you I have corresponded with and know well.  Some of you I only know by
the powerful emotions your words on my computer screen evoke. I want you
all to know that it has been a pleasure and honor to be a part of the
Poets Niche family.  This has truly been a wonderful experience for me. 
Unfortunately, at this time, things in my life are getting in the way of
my writing and I just don't feel I have the 'gift' anymore.  Not being
one to just sit and bask in the talent of others and not participate, I
think now would be a good time for me to quietly bow out. 

Again I appreciate the encouragement I've received from all of you.  And
even more than that I am blessed to have been chosen worthy enough to
read some of the talented work that has come into my life.  I will
cherish and remember this experience always.  I wish all of you the very
best of success, love, joy and peace.  Maybe someday, in the not so
distant future, our writing paths will cross again.  Until then, please
remember me as, 

..and then, in a twinklin' of an eye, she was gone.

your humble fellow writer, 
Ms CJoi Mosley (
Nubian Princess (Sauda) 


7)  WEBSITES TO CHECK OUT -- CEPHUS "C DAWG" PIERCE, invites you to check
out his web page at ( 
He created this site for the sole purpose of "sharing his views, concerns
and ideas pertinent in his life. Poetry is my tool, a lyrical device,
which I use to share my thoughts and opinions with others.  I touch the
realm of political, social, comical, and romanticism in my poetry.  This
is an interactive page, so comments and opinions are always encouraged." 
Also take a look at his photo gallery.  I especially like the pictures of
Cephus and his mom, and the candid photos of him at work and play.  Don't
forget to sign his guest book and tell Cephus that moni sent ya, or email
him with your comments at (  

CRYSTAL CARTIER joined the Poets Niche with a passion to share her poetic
opinions with others.  Crystal is a Social Worker by day and novelist,
poet, singer, cable talk show host, minister, and much, much more by
night.  For those of you not familiar with Crystal's "'n yo face, did I
cut you too deep," brand of poetic justice, go to (http:/ to read more of her poems.  And,
don't forget to listen to a few of the tracks from her new CD, "Love
Story Act One + 2".  Please email Crystal with your love and support at


8)  POETREE U SAY -- An anthology is underway, to be called Decades of a
Woman.  I will read poems for the anthology from August 15 until 
September 30.  The poems will cover decades 1 through 8 of a woman's
life.  They may be written about women by men, and they may be in other
languages (but not other alphabets.) Poems in other languages have to be
accompanied by a prose translation.  I am going for a wide range of
styles from traditional formalist to post-modern, and a variety of
different experiences of womanhood.  The project does not yet have a
publisher.  This is a charity project and all earnings will be given to
Finca International, an organization, which helps women in difficult
areas set up small businesses.  Please send me poems between those dates. 
I am only asking for one-time use of the poems, but can't pay any
royalties or permissions, so I can use either unpublished or previously
published if you have complete rights to them. Contributors will receive
a copy of the anthology.  Poems to be sent to Janet McCann, English
Department, Texas A&M University, College Station TX 77843.

THREE PUBLISHED Manhattan writers, working in poetry, fiction, and
memoir, wish to add fourth member to informal writing group.  They read
works-in-progress, share ideas, exchange helpful critiques.  Tell us
briefly about yourself.  Send writing sample to Susan Lukas, 865 First
Ave., #15C, New York, NY 10017; Email:

EDITOR/WRITER -- Association management company seeks an experienced
editor/writer to produce a variety of publications, including magazines,
newsletters, meeting programs, membership brochures, manuals,
directories, and marketing materials. Qualified individual will have the
ability to solicit articles, work with association editorial boards, sell
advertisements, and interface with graphic designers and printing
companies. Proficiency in Pagemaker and/or Quark Express and journalism
or English degree highly desirable.  Send resume, salary history and
three writing/publication samples to: Ken Sufka, Sufka &Associates, 1518
K St., NW, Suite 503, Washington, DC 20005; call (202) 737-0202; fax
(202) 638-4833; or Email: (  

GRANTS FOR WOMEN -- Barbara Deming Memorial Fund offers up to $1,000 per
grant, open to women whose work addresses women's concerns and/or speak
for peace and social justice from a feminist perspective.  Barbara Deming
Memorial Fund, P.O. Box 401043, Brooklyn, NY 11240-1043.  

PERFORMANCES -- Starting June 15th, Nubian Lounge will have the best of
Orlando's Lyricist, Poets and Spoken Word Artist.  If you have been
looking for Urban Culture, join Front Line Promotions with special guest,
Finesse 'N Da Soul, along with other open mic artists and enjoy a night
of poetry and comedy at the Caribbean Beach Club.  Doors open at 7:30
p.m.  For more details, call (407) 463-5376.

Women's Voices From the Sixties -- FICTION, POETRY, essays, memoirs,
journal excerpts, etc. by women are needed for an anthology entitled
Women's Voices From the Sixties. Please submit quality work that deals
with women's experiences during the Sixties. Enclose SASE, short bio.
Deadline: September 1. Send to Maria Bruno, 608 N. State Street, Alma, MI
48801. Email:

The Impact of Technology on Character and Culture -- QUALITY SHORT
fiction for a literary anthology about the impact of technology on
character and culture.  Send humanistic stories about people active
within  their technological surroundings, from workplace to woods, labs
and loves.  Unpublished stories up to 6,000 words preferred, typed,
double-spaced, SASE.  Queries welcomed. TechnoTales, P.O. Box 643,
Bloomsburg, PA 17815. 

2001 MAY SWENSON Poetry Award -- Postmark deadline: September 30, 2001
competition. Judge will be Pulitzer  Prize winning poet, Richard Howard.
The winning manuscript receives a $1,000 cash prize, publication in the
spring of 2001, and royalties. Guidelines:  Collections must be original
poetry in English, 50 to 100 pages; No restrictions on subject; Name
address on cover sheet only; $20 reading fee; SASE; Judge reserves the
right to declare no winner in any given year. Postmark deadline:
September 30. Submit 1 copy of manuscript (will not be returned) to May
Swenson Poetry Award, Utah State University Press, 7800 Old Main Hill,
Logan, UT 84322-7800. 

Fourteenth Annual Paul Laurence Dunbar Poetry Contest -- DETROIT BLACK
Writer's Guild Fourteenth Annual Paul Laurence Dunbar Poetry Contest. 
$10 per entry.  2 poems/30 lines max. $300 in prizes for top 3 winners.
10 Honorable Mention Certificates. Deadline: July 15. Winners will be
published in a chapbook. Chapbook price is an additional $5. Winners will
be announced at our Second Annual Mid-West Poets &Writers Conference,
September 1-3. Mail poems and fees to The Detroit Black Writer's Guild,
P.O. Box 23100, Detroit, MI 48223. Phone: (313) 897-2551. More info:

Second Annual Margaret Walker Short Story Competition -- DETROIT BLACK
Writer's Guild Second Annual Margaret Walker Short Story Competition. $10
per entry. 2,000-word maximum. $300 in prizes for top 3 winners. 10
Honorable Mention Certificates. Deadline: July 15. Winners will be
published in a chapbook. Chapbook price is an additional $5. Winners will
be announced at our Second Annual Mid-West Poets &Writers Conference,
September 1-3. September 1-3. Mail poems and fees to The Detroit Black
Writer's Guild, P.O. Box 23100, Detroit, MI 48223. Phone: (313) 897-2551.
More info: (  

Linear/Non-Linear Editor -- How would you like to work for the largest
full-service television, film, and video production facility in the
Southwest? Were looking for a qualified  "editor" to fill a highly
skilled niche in a fast-paced creative video and film production company
with a unique approach to business. Description: Editor for daily client
supervised edit sessions in all linear and non-liner edit suites: you
will be required to work with clients in a collaborative non-button
pusher style. You will act as a liaison between the client and the other
post-production departments within the company when necessary or
requested by the client. Strong organizational, detail oriented, time
management, and customer relations skills. Excellent interpersonal skills
required. Qualifications: Educational background: A minimum of 2 years
college or at least 4 years of related experience. Must be proficient or
have working knowledge of the following equipment: GVG 241 or equivalent
CMX style computer based editing system. Abekas 8100 series switcher
Abekas A-57 DVE, Abekas A-72 CG. Discreet Logic Smoke/Fire software. Avid
Non-Linear edit system. Contact Information: Scott Hales at
( AMS Productions, Inc., 16986 N. Dallas Parkway,
Dallas TX 75248; Fax: (972) 818-1257.  

Joke Writer/Copywriter/Humorist -- Creative Professional Wanted!!!  This
is an exciting opportunity to join a well-funded, powerful e-commerce
initiative. Our company will address a large, underserved market by
delivering creative solutions to solve a growing problem for businesses.
Our staff is developing products that are entertaining, informative and
educational, delivered with state of the art technology.  We need you to
come aboard and add the FUNNY. We are looking for individuals who enjoy
work and life, have an entrepreneurial spirit, a surplus of creativity,
enthusiasm and talent, and are driven by the highest quality standards.
Qualified applicants will have comedy writing experience.  Business humor
is a must. To apply for this position, please send a cover letter, resume
and humorous writing samples using the information below. Resumes without
writing samples will not be considered. Position Type: Full 
Time. Contact: Kristin Justvig at (; The Maray
Corporation, 30 Darby Road, Paoli PA 19301; Fax: (610)725-8405; Ref Code:


9)  POEMS OF THE WEEK 62 -- Poems of Week 62 will bring you up close and
personal with how our featured poets were affected by the senseless
killing of Amadou Diallo.  In conjunction with Poems of the Week 62, the
following excerpts also address Diallo's murder:

(A) Excerpts from the New York Times March 28, 2000 article, "In Bronx,
Tension at Meeting on Police-Community Relations" by JUAN FORERO, where
Aubrey Smith spoke out about his own fears; 
(B) Excerpts from the June 2000 Issue of Essence, p.96, "Black and Blue,"
written by my friend Wayne Edward; and 
(C) Excerpts from the Village Voice, "Walking While Black, The Bill of
Rights for Black Men," by Bryonn Bain.

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A)  "The meeting was supposed to open a dialogue between police officers
and city residents, perhaps even repair relations that have grown ever
more strained since Amadou Diallo was shot dead last year.  But...the
first in a series of hearings before a City Council committee examining
police-community relations instead featured one resident after another
relating, with a mixture of passion and anger, humiliating encounters
with the police.  And few, if any, of the more than 200 people who
attended the meeting in the Soundview section of the Bronx, not far from
where Mr. Diallo was shot, weren't in any mood to hear explanations from
top police commanders in the borough...The topic seemed more urgent
because of the death of Patrick Dorismond, a 26-year-old Haitian-American
who was fatally shot by an undercover officer in Manhattan on March
16...Aubrey Eric Smith, 37, said he has learned that despite his college
education and middle-class life, he is always seen by police as a black
man first.  And that, he said, has meant constant traffic stops.  "I was
stopped continuously," he said.  "If I wasn't stopped for a seat belt
infraction, I would get stopped for turning without a light.  We're
besieged upon by the police in more ways than one."  [Excerpts from the
New York Times March 28, 2000 article, "In Bronx, Tension at Meeting on
Police-Community Relations" by JUAN FORERO].

B)  " pained me to watch Amadou Diallo's mother arriving in New York
City, my city, to claim the bullet-riddled body of her slain son.  It
pained me that four police officers would shoot her unarmed child simply
seemingly, for having the audacity to be a Black man arriving home late
at night.  But want really hurt was the embarrassing reality that I
wasn't crying for this grieving mother and her dead child.  I was crying
tears of relief because my own little man-child had made it through
another day...I was determined to raise a positive, assertive and
ambitious Black man -- but Amadou Diallo's fate made me wonder... it's no
surprise that many Black men have learned instinctively to distrust
cops...Not one of my childhood friends from the old neighborhood made it
to age 20 without being unnecessarily stopped, questioned or taunted by
the police...A cop who frequents my favorite local pub insists... "When
it comes to these young Black dudes, sometimes you have to kick ass
first, then ask questions."  But the tragic result of such shallow logic
is that innocent people of color -- the Anthony Baezes and the Amadou
Diallos of the world -- are denied their opportunity to answer...I'll
still pray I never get a phone call telling me 41 shots have been fired."
[Excerpts from the June 2000 Issue of Essence, p.96, "Black and Blue," by
Wayne Edward].

C) "After hundreds of hours and thousands of pages of legal theory in law
school, I have finally had my first real lesson in the Law.  On Sunday,
October 18, 1999, I was taken from the corner of 96th Street and Broadway
by the NYPD and held overnight in a cell at the 24th Precinct...While
home from school for the weekend, I was arrested for a crime I witnessed
someone else commit.  [Check out "Walking While Black, The Bill of Rights
for Black Men," by Bryonn Bain at (

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Therefore, you don't want to miss poetic voices of our FEATURED POETS in
Poems of the Week 62 at (  Their candid, hard-hitting
words of no more excuses dressed up to look like political rhetoric or
pleas for justice will certainly make you want to stand up and sing that
old Negro spiritual "We Shall Over Come".  This week's featured poets

A-B-C's (a historical alphabet of) Black Americans or the Economy of E
Bonics by Saleem Abdal-Klaaiq

IN MEMORIAM by Padmore Agbemabiese
I'M NOT SURPRISED by Gloria Ware
WHOM DO WE BLAME? by Shaun Cecil

Please feel free to send your comments and support directly this week's


10)  WHERE I'VE BEEN -- These past several months I've been accused of
sleeping on the job, shirking my responsibilities, or snubbing members
for not returning phone calls or emails.  I CONFESS -- IT'S ALL TRUE! 
Boy, that felt good -- confessing really does cleanse the soul.  My
absence, however, did not mean that I wasn't still quietly working behind
the scenes to promote the Poets Niche or supporting members whenever
called upon to do so.

But, my sometimes -- drain me to the last drop, here's my advice on how
you should live your life because mine is so perfect, my door is always
open policy, perfect daughter/sister mother/friend/lover/employee, not
worthy child of God complex, people pleasing, can I help you with that,
yes, yes, yes -- personality, is very exhausting.  This much needed,
self-imposed hiatus allowed me to reconnect with me.  I replenished my
soul with -- two cups of LAZINESS, a spoonful of IT WILL EVENTUALLY GET
DONE, a pinch of LEAVE A MESSAGE and I'll get back to you when I'M READY,
and a hint of PLEASE DO NOT DISTURB -- NEW ATTITUDE.  After I carefully
blended all these ingredients together, I allowed myself to savor the
sweet taste of SLEEP!!!  My new motto: "If it doesn't flow, then let it
go," is my first step toward valuing the essence of the word NO!  And NO,
with NO apologizes or I'M SORRY introduction.  NO, because I don't want
to.  NO, because it won't kill you when you finally hear me say it.  NO,
without the heartache of hurting someone's feelings.  NO, without the
guilt of trying to always please everyone.  And NO, because I said, "NO." 
However, if you turn NO around, it spells ON, which now means -- ON my
terms and time, and ON NO one else's expectations of me.   

God has blessed me so abundantly with everything that sometimes I feel
guilty when I complain about not having enough time to do it all.  But
once I discovered that He has already DONE IT ALL for me, all I had to do
was be humble enough to accept His love and guidance.  

So what the heck does this mean?  I have NO clue.  I was hoping if I kept
typing that the answer would somehow reveal itself.  OR, PERHAPS, IT

I'd like to personally thank those members (and you know who you are) who
continued to checkup on me to see if I was still breathing.  Your love
and concern kept me going.  A BIG HUG to Craig Gill for keeping me in
stitches with his brand of "SO YOU THINK YOU GOT PROBLEMS" reality check. 
And to my Atlanta OFFLINE PARTY partners in crime and time (and you know
who you are), THANKS for always supporting me.  Your genuine friendship
will never be taken for granted.  

Below is moni's Poem of the Week.  Your comments are always welcomed and
greatly appreciated.

Until our paths cross again,
much love


                 THE SITUATION

While they drove into the center of the night's fog, 
the windshield wipers swiped away traces of the 
clinging mist.

He shifted into fifth gear and her thoughts revved 
into a mindless game of solitaire.

She counted the infinite number of white lines and 
wondered which one she had crossed head-on into life's 
little compromises.

Her left hand rested comfortably on the nape of his 
neck and she stroked his ego as he downshifted to 
better corner the approaching turn.

She sat trance-like replaying in her head what he 
had "not" said because he had a way of telepathically 
communicating his feelings with non-verbal gestures 
-- shifty eyes, a touch, or a misplaced glance.

Somehow she was coaxed into believing that promises 
are kept, especially between long lost lovers seeking 
a second chance at the remnants of happiness.

But no pennies could buy her thoughts and no private 
declaration of better days would free her from guilt.

The haze thickened and he picked up speed.

They were repeat offenders and both knew the situation.  
They just didn't know how stop or move on.  

Or how to let go of the pretentious bedside manners 
they had become accustomed to acting out.

Or how to let the ache of not being forever together 
settle in their bellies without regurgitating feigned 
memories of love.  

Or how to buy hope a one-way ticket on a speeding 
train to live happily ever after in the City of 
Concocted Alibis.

Or how they were able to swallow the devil's poison 
with such ease and disguise it with the pleasantries 
of temptation.  

"We'll be there in five minutes," he said as he placed 
his right hand on her left knee.  She didn't respond 
to his touch. 

Instead, she wondered if the rain ever sought shelter 
from the storm?  If the sun turned away from its shine?  
If laughter was ever sad?  If yes really wanted to say 
no?  And if the truth was somehow sifted through lily-white 
lies, would it still resemble the truth.

At what point would she be able to reconcile her unspoken 
vow of sisterhood with her prayers of wanting what belonged 
to another.

And although the glass slipper appeared to fit monetarily, 
she secretly wondered what she would pray for if she were 
in her shoes. 

The car stopped.
The moonlight peeked through the clouds.

And she thought how clear things looked through the 
vapor of fogged windows.

              Monica D. Blache (c) 2000

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