Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Way to be Okay~Great Expectation or Greater Appreciation...

Expect nothing;Appreciate everything"~Unknown 

Right off the bat I can say I appreciate this quote on appreciation. 

I appreciate organic tomatoes: 


I appreciate warmth when it is too cold 

And coolness when it is too hot. 

I appreciate clean water: 


And the availability to drink it freely: 

I appreciate laughter & Bugs Bunny: 

Finding humor when their is so much sadness 
And I appreciate being able to hear the laughter. 

I appreciate feeling deeply when there are many are too numb to feel at all. 

I appreciate being 60 when far too many do not get out of childhood, adolescent or experience young adulthood. 

I appreciate grandeur 


And awesome-ness even at night:


I appreciate the arts in all its genres, 



*Music in all its forms: 




I appreciate love both small & large 
And seasoned with cayenne:

In stolen moments: 

I appreciate purple sofas: 

And red lipstick: 

And great perfume: 

**Beautiful flowers, gardens and natural spaces: 


I appreciate friendships long ones and short ones: 


I even appreciate those who show who they are, so I know not to be that way: 

I appreciate even more who show kindness so I can be that way more: 

I expect to continue to do the same in 2011. 

All Rights ReservedJHM©10
 *Photographs by Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney©10
 **Photography by Jackie Walker©09

Monday, December 27, 2010

Putting it Down

Remember, once you're a pickle, you can never be a cucumber again."~Unknown 

Last night as I was wrapped up in blankets trying to stay warm, I got to thinking about what I am going to do here very soon. I do not and will not have a "bucket list" as I think that phrase like so many others gets tiresome & cliche' very easily and can be trite. 

I am not interested in what I want to do before I die type list. I do like know what new experiences I can have while I live. One thing I had done in classic procrastination is never finished my book. Now I did not say write it as I've been written enough for more then one, I just never bother to fine tune or attempt to get it published. 

There are other things that I let "Buts" get in the way of some in my control and others far beyond my control. As with the manuscript, out of my control was having my entire manuscript wiped out of my hard drive by a well intentioned friend & right now I cannot afford to get it in to someone with more skills then I to see if any or all is retrievable. 

What is in my control is not to belabor the fact, but get to writing again. Yes this could be even better then before, but I won't know until I do it. What was in my control is things I did not know I would want to write about & did not in the last manuscript, but now I want to. I think the avoidance for me was having to see something in its entirety and giving it a voice and I was as ready then as I am now to put it down. 

Because putting it down means I have to also really put it down. 

As with many writers far more prolific then moi, if I am reading correctly, writing can be a carthisis, a release & one may have to be prepared to "go there". 

I've been told for years, "So when will you/I write that book, so when will you/I publish",etc". 

Well while laying there, the words kept popping in my head the 1st chapter.. So today I started a new chapter and plan to write just a little bit everyday. I also plan to submit by June 2011, a synopsis of the book to a publishing company that last summer I failed to submit as planned. The time apparently was not right, I was too close to surgery to do it so the lie I told myself. 

Well now that excuse is gone... 

Then, the 1st thing I hear this morning turning on the news was the death at age 54 of the singer Teena Marie, a prolific songwriter,singer & musician. Far too young and was really I think coming into her own in a second stage, from natural causes. I've never met her, have seen her in concert and saw she had a talent to reckon with. My heart is sad for her family. 


But I found myself tearing up just so much. 

No I did not have any kind of an ephiphany nor the over use euphenisms people like to use when a celebrity or performer dies on how life is short etc. I felt sad for her shortened life when there was more , it was apparent, she was on her way to do. And I felt sadden for her family. 

My tears were for another reason and I think hearing of her death was a jump off point. 

We cannot go back to something or stay with something once we have changed as in the afore-mentioned quote:"Remember, once you're a pickle, you can never be a cucumber again." 

So now what to do? 

I just did it... 

I wrote. 

I put it down... 

R.I.P Lady T... She was the business 



Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Sens de Lune (Moon Sense)...

Photograph by Robin Lee 2007 www.astronomynotes.net

Moon Senses 
By Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney©10
I purposely stayed up last night like many to witness this gorgeous lunar eclipse that occurred on the shortest day & the advent of winter.  We were fortunate here in New Orleans to have clear skies and lovely night weather as I repeatedly starting around 5pm at twilight to watch this gorgeous moon ascent from between this 135 yr old Victorian house.   It was nestled in between the house and a group of trees.  I automatically reached for my camera only to be reminded it was broken.  It  was a sight to behold this gorgeous huge moon rising and tracking its ascent across the evening sky.

Here in N.O.La since we are indeed on a crescent the heavenly bodies rise not in a linear way but in a curve.  About midnight I started in earnest to step outside so I can figure out the positioning of the moon in its arching.

I was not let down.  While the local news predicted it would be a full eclipse around 1:41am CST, it did not until 2:20am, but it was a show all the way.

The moon at its highest point was directly over my roof, so I had to climb down the stars to stand on the sidewalk to look up.  I chuckled to myself as I could only imagine one of my neighbors looking out & seeing this woman on the sidewalk at 2am looking at the sky.

But then again it is New Orleans. 

 I felt no fear being out there in the middle of the night alone as I was not alone..

After I saw the glory of this:


I then came in and promptly felled into the deepest, dreamless sleep I had had in some time awakening refreshed and still even now find myself smiling ever so lightly.

Well Done (Sens de Lune)

By Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney ©08

On this autumn/spring/winter/summer day I flew 

Over fresh to wander ocean sand.. 

River ribbons, beautiful blue

Flowing softly through the land

And the moon said "Well done..."

At seeing while in repose all that could embraced

Shrouded in moon hues’ lace

For the hearts undone and the ones that still need singing

The prisms’ delighted flush kept right on winging 

To the heavens where the angels shouted in applause...

For all the beauty of today that indeed had been done.
All rights reservedJHM5-5-08©


Cremaos en los suenos ("We believe in dreams)…


Full Moon in Purple Early Morning photograph 2009JHM©09

Monday, December 20, 2010

Twilight Sounds

This was a lovely 15 minute experience this evening:

Uptown house~

I just came in here in early twilight checking for the mail when I noticed nestle in between the old Victorian house across the street and some trees this beautiful, glorious full moon beginning it ascent skyward.  As I was admiring it and the tickle of my chimes ringing out the pentatonic scales in baritone. The melody in my chimes are the sounds of what became the song Amazing Grace, but in actuality it was a West African sorrow chant sung by enslaved Africans from Sierra Leone in the belly of the ship.  At that time, John Newton in 1748, a slaver who turned away from slavery and penned Amazing Grace. At the Library of Congress when you see the copy it said written by John Newton, melody unknown

Normally I would not use a link like this but the information is excellent.  Please listen to this very brief demonstration & lecture by Wintley Phipps.  I wished there was another taping with simply the lecture, but this is it ;good historical facts:

Then I noticed or heard rather, rolling on the winds on my street ever sound lovingly was the sounds of a trumpet,  intermingling almost in  a deliberate concert with my chimes.  Whomever it was really knew how to play! I forgot what I went outside for!

It was haunting and clear. I just stopped for a few minutes to listen.

Only in New Orleans...

Uptown Sidewalk~All Rights Reserved JHM©10

Breathe in..breathe out...
All Rights Reserved JHM©10

Info on John Newton:

Compassion will cure more sins than condemnation. ~Henry Ward Beecher

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Sound...

About 8 years ago I was invited to a poetry ready at the Neutral Ground Cafe which I am delighted to know survived Katrina and has reopened.  During this Sunday afternoon open mike was a young man,very non-descript who walked up to the mike with an acoustic guitar and had this voice so sweet,I was swept away.

Not one but 2 poems about him while I was there...

I've not seen him since... I do not know if HE survived the storm or ever came back to New Orleans...

Photgraph byJHM©10

Man on the String
By Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney©03

A man on the string…
And he sings a celebration that swept the world.
Flowing with a mysterious refrain…
Will you continue to sing with the man on the string?
Who stopped just long enough, only to begin still another celebration unto me?

This man on a string, as he continues to ping.
Oh just so doing his thing…

As he continues to swing in the belly of the Neutral Ground Cafe.
These sound that vibrated around the world.
And he brings no steel to the space on Daneel (Street)
He is just bringing another celebration song to thee.
All rights reserved JHM 7-13-03©

Photgraph byJHM©10

His Sound
By Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney ©03

His sound was like John Denver with cayenne pepper…
Thrown in for good measure.
And his sound wrapped around my left ear.
Engaging his heart’s voice enlivening my soul.
His sound is like John Denver with cayenne thrown in for good measure.
(Fly away…. Fly away…. Flay a-waaaay!)

All right reserved JHM©03

Photgraph byJHM©10


I discovered this poem I had written while sorting through a huge pile of ones as I slowly replace a lot of things after my hard drive crashed.  It had been almost a decade ago when walking in the pouring rain that was so hard I could not tell where the curb ended and literally fell on my face.  It was one of those could it get any worse kind of moments...Boy did I ache the next day!

However the day this happen I went home after drying off this popped in my mind...Today I smiled upon reading my words and remembering the time, because it was simply that.. a time.

Falling Down
By Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney©02

I’ve fallen on my face…
Soaked in a downpour when…
Out of the blue...
I fell on my face!
“What else can happen?
There’s no way out!
What more do I need to do?
I so weary…
This can’t go on..
Oh God, no more!”

I fell on my face!
Can I look up?

Or get up?
Roll over… Push away?
No cheering around me…
No motivational speakers to perform…
(Not even a phantom applause).
No assistance just hard driving rain…
Pelting relentlessly.
And all around me...
Weeds, debris…broke
(No hope)

I fell on my face!
But I got up…
And kept on walking.
Soaked to the core…
And carried on.

(Without faith I am hopeless.)

All rights reserved JHM 6-27-02©

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


This morning I was watching on Good Morning America a brave civilian woman come to the aid of a police officer being overwhelmed by someone in what was suppose to be a routine traffic stop; a second woman who bravely came back after fleeing from a gunman who was attempting to do harm to a school board in Florida & I realized I had started to cry.

First I was very proud of these women who showed bravery when they could have simply ran & took care of themselves in the midst of danger...

Then the beginning of this poem popped in my head.  I know when a poem is coming and scattered looking for paper & pen to write it down.  What happened next was what you see below.  This is a rough draft, I may tweak, then again I may just leave it in its purest,rawest form...

By Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney©10

Gotta know there is still goodness in the world.
Gotta know not for show
That integrity stands strong
And compassion reigns supreme
That love is divine.

I gotta know that people’s hearts are not far gone
And as monumental & as Sweet
As daring as the comet streaking across the night’s vastness being as splendid as it wants to be.
Being bold, ferocious with as much nerve it can hand out the sunshine of the Way.

I gotta know that a child’s tears
Is not from distress …
But from discovering his mommy’s eyes for the first time.
Or forced to be older then their years in fear for a world that gives no warranty in youthful joyfulness…

I gotta know that my elders are warmed from love of family
And not frozen in apprehension as in “How am I going to do it”?
And not dismissed as inconsequential or irrelevant
Or even worse treated as if they are not neither here or there
Or beside the point
By ones whose condescending eyes who wasn’t even around to envision the 7th wonders of the world.

I gotta know a phone call brings laughter, cheer and goodwill…
Not from fear & dismay.
I gotta know somewhere in the world that some will trust as they sleep
That they will not waken to “Oh God what am I going to do”…

I gotta know when on say
“Let’s do lunch”, they mean it…
O that expressed “concern” is not thinly shrouded judgment...
That one will be connected & shown in deed, in action.
That it is in real time, not hypothetical,
Not ever practical.
Action that consent to one’s dignity being left intact...
Be honored; flown high…

I gotta know that hope prevails
That despair is to no avail
I gotta know a world flowing over with mercy in actions both significantly and substantially
That civility is the norm not the exception.
That dreams are meant to be dreamt, not abandoned.
Or trampled on by modern day Philistines bent on harming as they’ve been impaired
That a “Good Morning” & a “G’day” is simply that…
Not only for a privileged few.
Who greedily hold to those privileges as if there isn’t enough to go around?
Gladly trample on the vulnerable anew.

Where is that world?
In my view?
It may, you say
You, it’s all around you.
While that may be true, then it needs a mo betta P.R firm…

I just gotta know that there is still a world
There is the multitude
Not a few
Who gotta have a world?
That is just, right & true.
All rights reservedJHM12-15-10©

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Brownies, Wildflowers, Peaches & Everything...

 I was delighted one of my classmate from my counseling class stopped by today and brought me a homemade brownie wrapped in wax paper. I almost creid when she told me this tradition in her family. It was very nice today to share for a second in someone's family's tradition, especially sionce I do not have MY family near. It was very very nice. (And yummy).

As Iturned to go back into the house I suddendly realized that I had accidently left one of my hanging plants outside in the freezing cold the last few nights, but there it was alive not only kickin' but thriving enough despite the cold produced a bloom!  These were not flowers that normally will bloom in Dec let along in 29 degree weather.  But there it was.

Immediately the song "Wildflower" started whirling around in my head with the song Wild Fire but I solved the trivia mystery knowing it was Wildflower I was pay attention to. 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=LyKXW3ioY1Q&feature=relate d

 I looked to it that humble plant despite the freezing air not only stood firm, but was fierce enough to produce a bloom.  As I picked it up I got the connection for myself and carried it gently into the house.  

Then I was delighted to receive an email with a song that for me is as captivating now as the first time I heard it.  But this was from a concert called "Black Girls Rock".  The song original performed by the late Nina Simone was also featured in the Soundtrack for the movie "For Colored Girls who Considered Suicide when the Rainbow is Enuf".

2010 featuring Kelly Price, Marsha Ambrosius, Jill Scott & Ledisi:


And a 2009 version featuring one of my favorite vocalist Lizz Wright, jazz vocalist Diana Reeves & Nina Simone's daughter Laura Izibor:


For me it was a good respite for a day and a moment to rest the soul...

Well Done ©08

By Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney08©

On this autumn/spring/winter/summer day I flew

Over fresh to wander ocean sand..

River ribbons, beautiful blue

Flowing softly through the land

And the moon said "Well done..."

At seeing while in repose all that could embraced

Shrouded in moon hues’ lace

For the hearts undone and the ones that still need singing

The prisms’ delighted flush kept right on winging

To the heavens where the angels shouted in applause...

For all the beauty of today that indeed had been done.
All rights reservedJHM5-5-08©

Monday, December 6, 2010

Be Still my Heart..Lest I should Chance©10

I was actually writing a response to a question in one of my team member this morning which spurred me to expand a little of my thoughts to her question today.  

After a second night of waking up at 3am unable to return back to sleep, I "listened" in my heart which is usually my freshest best thinking.  My first conscious thoughts in the morning when I pay attention and not rush off to others jabbering tends to be the most accurate.

My 1st thoughts today was "I don't want this any more".  Now those thoughts did not tell me exactly what "THIS" is or was, just I did not want "this" any longer.

If I know my heart well enough it will let me know in more clarity if I just be still & leave it alone so it (or me) can get to it.  

I feel sadly  about someone I thought I was getting to know a bit  over the last 4-5 months ago said something  a few days ago in a conversation we were having about their  their view about who I am , what I am about & where they think I should be.  I was a bit surprised how they came to their conclusions  as the times we have been together  have been limited, infrequent and even in that span he spent a great deal of time interrupting me, but yet he draped a conclusion that was really off base.

No I did not take his proclamations as being gospel truth (and for the record it was not all bad), in fact although skewed & racked with misinformation, I was pretty amazed that I sat & listened.  

Ok,I confess,  I was really curious what he thought...

As I reflect back on that conversation I came to my own conclusion that maybe I need to treat this person gently, but at a safer distance... His definition of me did not jibe with me.  I think his motive while he felt he was being sincere & well intended had a lot less to do with me then things he are working on himself with a wee bit of male arrogance & presumption thrown in for a garnish.

Then this morning looking somewhere else this quote caught my eye:

“When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself.” ~ Wayne Dyer .

So his defining me really was more about how he defined himself. I won't go into his background but to say he was defining his own history while he was "thought" me.

I don't know if it ever goes away this modern trend of humans who make extremely fast judgements and actually going out to reshape other people with or without their consent.

 I do know that negative views are not always a negative thing to wash away easily .   How we use it may allow a different shape or texture to emerge or we may view it with different lens which may by doing that turns a negative into a positive(?) if we want that? 

My self image isn't usually a negative one but then how do you know if something is positive if there isn't something negative to contradict it?  

What I do know  that right now in this tumultuous time, many a day I am tired, very tired and need a serious break from all the stuff that my current circumstances which is way too much like a popular series which keeps having spin offs with knowing the next spin off is getting worse, so it is time to close out the brand.

I do not want to hear by pundits, self-appointed cultural shapers, low mouth selfish blow-hards who in a more sane time be dismissed as so much wind warming the air tell me, you or who how it is to be done if you only _________" while you are drowning and they hand you a glass of tepid water  while you're crashing around in high waves.  

Ok ok I am not spinning wheels here, but I just don't see life as always being sunshine, lollipops and rainbows every second,.  You cannot have rainbows w/o rain. And night has to fall for the sunshine to appear.  And you WILL encounter jerks, naysayers, twisted people, lonely souls and lets face it mighty cruel,selfish people who sole job it appears is to remind you NOT to be like that.

Other days I am not that noble or magnanimous or brave enough to face gale force winds with my eyes focused on the prize...As that old country western song would say "it only happens in the movies..(or TV, DVDs or the Internet).

I'm not sure yet where I will go with that.  Or with this.

What I know rings true for me is when  when my synapses are firing up and I am during these middle of the night wake up, I have to do one thing well.

Be Still ...
All rights Reserved JHM12-6-10©

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Swingin' Notes~Buttonwood artSpace to Host

Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney "visual poetry" art  has been invited to be seen in the February/March 2011exhibition: "The Note Illustrated~ A Swingin' Visual of all Things Music"

Hosted by the Buttonwood Art Space in partnership with the American Jazz Museum
www.buttonwoodartspace.com  www.americanjazzmuseum.org 
According to their website: "We the Buttonwood artSpace – an art & artist display and sale gallery complete with custom framing service!  Located In Kansas City Missouri, atop historic Union Hill, our space is provided to us through the philanthropic dedication of Jon & Wendy McGraw and Buttonwood Financial Group, LLC. Though the tireless efforts of the staff of BFG, and the leadership of a voluntary artSpace board of directors, Buttonwood artSpace has come to symbolize a quality community display space.  We routinely host four to five “First Friday” Opening nights per year, are a member of the Crossroads Art District, and offer the artSpace free of charge as an event space to non profit organizations".

Buttonwood artSpace located on the historic Union Hill area of Kansas City, Mo. www.buttowoodartspace.com