Come Back As A Flower

Come Back As A Flower
Mixed Media Self-Portrait (Sculpted clay mask, fabric & digital illustration)

Reflections on Week #1 Your Book Starts Here

I’m becoming a writer via online learning at the Loft Literary Center on Washington Avenue South in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  The seed for being a writer was buried deep inside me planted by growing up in Yat’s Kitchen by Mattie Burnette Randolph and her mother, Momma Mary Burnette.  These two French Edisto Gullah grand mothers’ gave me the world through Algonquin fiber arts.  Now Yat’s Kitchen has become Indigo Blues, a book of three short stories, poetry and art about Algonquin culture through the eyes of women’s stories during creative hands activities in coastal Carolina.

Indigo Blues was conceived during my Fall 2014 journey from Toisnot to Chowanook along the paved Algonquin trail that is now Hwy 258.  This road was one of our major Trail of Dreams 303 years ago.  My sojourn reconnected me with childhood travels along Hwy 258 with momma and mama and the stories of adventures along what I knew as The Blues Highway.

Chowanook is the site of the former Chowan Baptist Female Institute, which is now Chowan University.  A large white plantation house presides at the end of a long U-shaped entrance behind Squirrel Park nestled beside Lank Vann.  So much symbolism is attached to my being at Chowanook and I credit it all to Divine intervention.  The Holy Spirit is leading me to a place to walk out God’s purpose for my life.  It’s the experience of being in the right place at the right time under the right circumstances.  It’s my realizing that timing matters, and in life we have to wait our turn.  It’s about God’s will being done, not my own.  My desire to teach at a small college has manifested itself in my life in such a way as to connect me with Algonquin culture.

So, I’m bringing form and shape to my life through writing under the guidance of Mary Carroll Moore at the Loft.  The best writers come out of the Loft community and I plan to be one of them.  I’m part of the 21st Century generation of women writers coming of age at the Loft.  The sum of the achievements of my fellow learners in Your Book Starts Here is astounding and we have the potential to give voice to the reality of living in the USA.

My memory verse for this week:
“If you hear the dogs, keep going.  
If you see the torches in the woods, keep going.  If there’s shouting after you, keep going.  
Don’t ever stop. Don’t ever quit.  
Don’t give up.  Don’t give in. 
If you want a taste of freedom,
 keep going!”

--Harriet Tubman

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