As I take this journey to find the truest me. The very essence, the quintessential form of who I am. Pleasure and purpose rolled into one I remember. I have always been a writer, a speaker and devourer of words. I started out writing short stories to escape from the life I was living. I liked my fantasy world much more than the real world. It was too cruel, too unforgiving. I then moved on to longer stories, with more intricate characters and better details. As I got older I found my way to poetry. It is wear I told the story of my life, my love, my all. At first I only wrote to exorcise my demons. To rid me of the thoughts and words that continually found their way into my psyche. Eventually I found my way to the stage. My first experience was not so lovely. It would be 5 years before I returned. When I returned I was surrounded by love and acceptance. I was quickly rising to notoriety on the poetry scene ( or my narrow view of the scene). My poetry was even said to be transparent and relevant. Little did I know I was a VERY small fish in a VERY big pond that wasn’t so forgiving or loving or welcoming. But aren’t we all artist? Where is the love. I had come into the poetry world, not knowing that the little venues I was doing and the people I was surrounded by were not all there was to this word thang. When I hit the “REAL” scene and saw the “REAL” poets. I LOST me. I soon began to compare my poetry to those who had been doing it for years. I no longer felt relevant just transparently boring. That was almost 8 years ago and I still find myself struggling with that same demon. Why? Because I am chasing after the wrong thing. Living a LIE! Saying that I don’t want notoriety while secretly yearning to be seen, heard, known. I often say that If I touch just one person I have done my job. But do I really and truly believe that. I found myself looking for people to talk to after shows, just one person that would “confirm” that I had done a good job. That I had touched them. I was searching for all the wrong things. If I am to call myself a Christian and say that I am doing this because I love God and because HE has gifted me I must make sure that it is the truth. I must make sure that I am not dealing in false humility, by always demeaning and knocking my gift. I would often deflect compliments or say that I wanted to be like this person or that person because I wanted to seem like I was humble. True humility can only come from Christ. So now I say “thank you” when given a compliment. Through some truly gifted, humble and loving poets I have found my voice. I am still very cautious and I still seem to get scared when I am set to go up with who I consider to be heavy hitter and I still find myself wondering if other poets are just being nice when they compliment me. But I must Write On, Right on, and I will do just that. Until all the insecurities are exorcised from me. So if you write. WRITE ON, RIGHT ON… the world deserves to hear your words!