Posted by: Viola | March 11, 2016

On a day of self-doubt, two magical messages

I’ve been feeling a little angst about my blog this week. I am not sure where the angst is coming from. Perhaps it has to do with the fact that I share quite a bit about my personal life and journey with poetry. I don’t suppose one ever gets used to the feeling of vulnerability. And sometimes I do worry if my blog might get in the way of me being hired for a job, if my employer happens to Google me and sees all my personal writings and ramblings. Usually, I don’t let my concerns get the best of me, as far as blogging goes, since writing and blogging are passions of mine, and I cannot imagine giving either up or having one without the other.

Well, I woke up during the night wondering if I should quit blogging. I thought about it for a while, wondering if I really should keep blogging and sharing my story in this way, in this very public and highly accessible way. Eventually, I went to sleep, but I woke up this morning still thinking about it. Then, after not being able to reach any decision, I told myself that I would check with my mentors first, and I would let them guide me on this matter.

I checked my email, soon after waking up, and I was thrilled to find that I’d received an email from someone in Ireland! Someone who, along with her group of friends, had read my poem Nigerian Girl with Calabash, and they had selected this poem to read in honor of International Women’s Day 2016. I was over the moon. It filled me with so much comfort and joy. They had looked me up on Google and had enjoyed reading my work. Wow!

This was just what I needed. Especially on this day of self-doubt, which started out with me feeling quite conflicted about my blogging and my online presence. If I take down my blog, people will find some of my work online, but my blog offers so much more. It offers my portfolio, links to my audio recordings, and lots of updates on whats going on with me.

So this goes all the way to Ireland: Dierdre and your lovely friends, thank you so much for your message and for reading my poem on such a special occasion. ❤ You made my day today! Thank you! ❤

Later in the day, I was on Facebook and noticed that a message had come into my Facebook inbox but been marked as coming from someone I was not friends with on Facebook. I clicked to see who the message was from, where it was from, what it was about. Well, wonder of wonders, it was a second message about my poetry. It came from a freshman college student at a university in the state of Washington. Her African Studies class had read my chapbook, and she enjoyed my poems, and she also hails from Sacramento, my hometown in California.

So this goes out to Grace: Thank you so much for your wonderful message, and thank you to you and to all your class and your teacher for reading my BIRD FROM AFRICA chapbook. It brought me so much hope for my poetry and for African poetry, in general. This is what I dream for my poetry, that students will read and discuss it and (if they get the chance) share their thoughts with me. ❤

To both Dierdre and Grace: You brought tears to my eyes today. Your messages were just what I needed to read to day. Thank you with all my heart. With Gratitude, Viola ❤


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