Poetry Month Day #9: “Alchemy” Poem



Happy Day #9 of National Poetry Month!

Today, I took myself on an artist date to see the Alchemical Vessels exhibition at the Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery located in the Smith Center for Healing and the Arts. It features 125 artworks by 125 artists in the Washington, DC metro area. Each artist transformed a ceramic bowl to reflect their own personal aesthetic and medium. Together, their work engages in a community dialogue on healing and transformation.




One of my favorite pieces is I love Pansies by John Paradiso (see photo above), a friend and fellow Smith Center Artist-in-Residence. John’s work reminded me of nature’s alchemy and the beauty that winter gives birth to during springtime. His artwork and the exhibition inspired my poem “Alchemy.”


She is standing in the same place I left her 25 years ago.
Feeling the same fears of failure and not being or having enough.
Wearing the same outfit of unworthiness.
Somedays she is able to mask her wounds.
Other days she is wide open.
Vulnerable to the emotional tsunami of pain.
I thought we had parted ways, but come to find out we just stopped being roommates who share a room in one of those homes that decorate the Gold Coast on 16th Street.

Our address is the same.
We just live in seperate rooms on different floors.
She’s in the basement bedroom.
I’m on the second floor with a window facing the row of pansies in the front yard.

When I look in the mirror, I see her reflection and realize we are one in the same.
Her wounds are my wounds.
I pause and breathe in and out as I process our truth.

As I sit with our truth, I begin to dwell in a place of stillness.
Her voice begins to speak.
She confesses how tired she is of masking her wounds.
Her confession opens the door to an intention to declutter her spirit, mind, heart, and body so that she can fully express wholeness.

Staring straight into her eyes, I bow to her highest self and extend my hand so that we can surrender to our soul’s alchemy.

Copyright 2015 by Madelyn C. Leeke. All rights reserved.

Poetry Month Day #8: “Illumine” Poem


Happy Day #8 of National Poetry Month!

Today’s poem is entitled “Illumine.” It is inspired by a quote from Dr. Ernest Holmes’ book “Science of Mind” I read this afternoon: “O Eternal and Blessed Presence, illumine my mind and command my will that my Soul may be refreshed and that my life may be renewed.”


Vulnerabilities trickle onto the yoga mat as my hips open wide to release emotions that have decluttered my body temple for too long.

I breathe in and out as the wetness of my tears creates a mini puddle.

I wonder why all of this is happening now. When will it stop?

No answer comes.

I am reminded that I control no person or thing.

I am reminded to surrender to the Spirit’s healing light and love. So I do.

I allow it to shine through me and every part of my spirit, mind, heart, body, and life.

My voice gets clearer.

I hear where I criticize myself and engage in self talk that hinders my soul’s growth.

I come into hero’s pose and offer a prayer of gratitude and affirm Spirit illumine my mind and command my will that my soul is refreshed and my life, faith, and trust are renewed.
Photo Credit: Leigh Mosley, http://www.leighmosley.com

Poetry Month Day #7: “Bloom” Poem


Happy Day #7 of National Poetry Month!

Today’s poem is entitled “Bloom.” It is inspired by the beautiful flowers I saw during my afternoon walk.


Right where I am lies an opportunity.
It doesn’t look like it, but it is.
It is wrapped in a package I wouldn’t normally open.
My fear of what’s next is stopping me.
I can’t forecast my future.
I have no access to the details.
I can’t control it.
The only thing I can do is surrender, have faith, open the package, and bloom right where I am.

Copyright 2015 by Madelyn C. Leeke. All rights reserved.

Poetry Month Day #5 – “Resurrection” Poem


Happy Easter and Happy Day #5 of National Poetry Month!

Today’s poem is entitled “Resurrection.” It was inspired by the Easter Sunday service I attended this morning at my church, Unity of Washington, DC. Reverend Sylvia E. Sumter, Senior Minister at Unity, shared a powrful message about “The Unconquerable Spirit.” The Unity choir rocked the house with a soulful series of songs. The Unity congregation was filled with love, light, peace, and positivity. The experience filled me with an abundance of gratitude that poured itself into creative expression … my “Resurrection” poem.


Every morning I rise from my bed is a ressurrection.
An opportunity to choose how I will live my life.
I can choose to see it as a blessing to start again


I can follow the stories I tell myself that are NOT true and walk straight into my mind of judgment.
Judgment of self.
Judgment of others.

Today, I made a ressurection commitment to wholeness.
It begins when I rise each day and do the work of understanding, forgiving, and releasing the untrue stories and judgment.
It is a path I’m taking.
One that I’ve avoided for many years for fear of life getting messy, but there’s no place hide at 50.
So I have surrendered.

Guess what I found on the other side of surrender?
The makings of an unconquerable spirit.

Copyright 2015 by Madelyn C. Leeke. All rights reserved.

Poetry Month Day #4: “Nonjudgment” Poem

Happy Day #4 of National Poetry Month!

This morning, I participated in Oprah Winfrey and Deepak Chopra’s Manifesting True Success meditation which focused on the practice of nonjudgment. It inspired today’s poem.



My heart and spirit long to be free.
How can they be liberated when I judge myself?

My nonjudgment opens the door to judging others.
When I judge others, I judge myself.
I wound what is most precious.

I want to stop, but don’t know how.
So I breathe and sit still.
I sit still and breathe.
Wisdom whispers.
Choose compassion.

Photo Credit: ChopraMeditation.com

Poetry Month Day #2 Poem – “Breathe” – From #FierceLivingat50 Series

Photo Credit: http://thehealthylivinglounge.com
Photo Credit: http://thehealthylivinglounge.com


Welcome to Day #2 of National Poetry Month. Today’s Poem-A-Day is yoga-inspired.


Breathe woman breathe



Let all of yourself out

Without censure

Speak your truth

Allow it to be heard

Embrace all of YOU from the inside out

Celebrate your strengths and weaknesses  

Revel in your vulnerabilities  

Play, laugh, and enjoy pleasure

Be grateful for your humanity

Breathe in your divinity

Exhale it out with beauty and humility  


Copyright 2015 by Madelyn C. Leeke. All rights reserved.

Happy National Poetry Month: I’m joining the April Poem-A-Day Challenge


Happy National Poetry Month!

While I was at the WordPress Press Publish Conference in Portland, Oregon, I had a great conversation about writing poetry with the “Naughty Poetess,” author of the Naughty Poetess blog. I shared how much I missed writing poetry. On the flight home to DC on Sunday morning, I decided to participate in the April Poem-A-Day Challenge. I participated in 2008 and 2009. Both experiences helped me blog and publish my second book, That Which Awakens Me: A Creative Woman’s Poetical Memoir of Self-Discovery.

This year, I have chosen Fierce Living at 50 as my theme for the April Poem-A-Day Challenge. I will be using some of my poems in my new e-book series and artwork that will be available on my Etsy shop this summer, Here is the first poem, “Unmasked.”


Buried wounds began to rise to the surface.
I tried to run and hide, but there was no safe haven.
So I stood in the tsunami of my pain.
My legs tired.
I sat still and allowed it all to come undone.
Five years of looking inside, looking outside, looking above, and looking below.
Peeling back the layers of my mask … the person who I thought I was and making peace with who I have become.
Arriving at 50 unmasked with acceptance, compassion, forgiveness and love…knowing and giving thanks that the journey continues.

Copyright 2015 by Madelyn C. Leeke. All rights reserved.

Happy #CreativityThursday: Listen to National Poetry Month Podcast with Twitter Poem


Happy #CreativityThursday!

Happy National Poetry Month!

What does poetry mean to you?

Who are your favorite poets?

Click on the link to listen to my podcast to hear my definition of poetry and a poem about Twitter. Enjoy!

Happy Creativity Thursday 4/4

Photo Credit; Derrick Weston Brown
Photo Credit; Derrick Weston Brown

Happy Creativity Thursday and National Poetry Month!

Today, I am celebrating the poetry of Derrick Weston Brown, an educator and a “people’s poet.”  He is also the author of Wisdom Teeth. Derrick is a dear friend and an extraordinarily gifted wordsmith.

Wisdom Teeth by Derrick Weston Brown
Wisdom Teeth by Derrick Weston Brown

His poetry gets underneath my skin and travels to the depths of my soul. When I hear him read his work, I am stopped in my tracks. Click here to watch his Wisdom Teeth trailer. Be sure to check his book out on Amazon.com. Go on and buy a copy! His poetry will expand your mind! Enjoy!

Who are your favorite poets?

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday! 4/2


Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

It’s National Poetry Month! One of the places I like to visit during the month is Poets.org. It offers a new poem each day. You can even have it emailed to you. Click here to sign up.

Are you a poetry lover? Who are your favorite poets? Where do you go online to read poetry?

Photo Credit: Tim'm T. West, www.reddirt.biz
Photo Credit: Tim’m T. West, http://www.reddirt.biz

I love reading the poetry of Tim’m T. West, an amazing activist,author, educator, feminist, hip hop artist, poet, scholar, and singer. I met Tim’m while he was hosting The Front Porch, a monthly poetry reading series at Mocha Hut, a cafe located on U Street in Washington, D.C (closed in 2009). He encouraged me to participate in The Front Porch monthly readings.

Photo Credit: Tim'm T. West, www.reddirt.biz
Photo Credit: Tim’m T. West, http://www.reddirt.biz

His creative energy, friendship, music, poetry, and poetical memoir, Red Dirt Revival: A Poetic Memoir In Six Breaths, inspired me to write and publish my own poetical memoir, That Which Awakens Me. Take a moment and click here to watch a video of Tim’m performing his creative work at the Front Porch in 2007. Also, click here to watch a 2009 video of my poem dedicated to him.  Enjoy!