Music Monday: Meatloaf

I remember thinking I had just discovered something new and really cool when I first began playing Meatloaf’s 1993 Bat Out Of Hell II: Back into Hell album. MTV and VH1 were playing his epic music videos with all of their gothic drama and I thought myself unique. As it turned out his music was mostly a reprise from two decades prior, and my mom was quick to note I had no clue who he really was.

Between Jim Steinman’s amazing songwriting and piano-based rock, along with Meatloaf’s passionate performances, I really loved his work for a number of years in my youth. Michael Lee Aday, the man known as Meatloaf, really inspired who I became as a musician. He passed away January 20, 2022. In an oddly mystical and gothic way, I hope he’s joined Jim (died April 19, 2021) again in the afterlife and they’re making lots of great music again.

I’ll close with sharing one of my favorite Meatloaf hits (Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through) and an early acting feature by Angelina Jolie! 🙂


Sunday Night Thoughts: Labeling People

For my Sunday night thoughts, I’ve been wondering why so many people seem obsessed with labeling people on the internet. From race to religion and lifestyle choices, it seems this younger generation has influenced the popular social narratives into a state of compartmentalization. No sharing, no appreciating, no learning from one another – everything is a problem, and others have a right to tell you who and what you are without knowing anything about you. This is unstable thinking.

As someone with a very racially, ethnically, and culturally mixed background, I find myself feeling defensive from so many online arguments. I tend not to participate, but every now and then, I find myself making a statement about human anthropology or trying to find the common ground. Labeling people into categories, invented by social expectations, is weird. It’s divisive. It’s ignorant. And yet, for some reason, very educated internet users are promoting this labeling habit as if it were an act of something positive.

Anything that pushes you to reject any aspect of yourself, your ancestry, and your living remnant of human history is wrong. Stop letting people tell you or others how to identify. Nothing good is going to come from long-term labeling and compartmentalizing of human beings.

Poem: Cactus Circus

Cactus Circus by Princess Yvonne Dumas

One, two, three, you go,

Grow across the surface –

With a scorched tip nose

And a juggler’s dream come true.

Do you know the way from here?

Is it straight to the water or my fear?

Looks like you’re missing an act.

Right there, do you see it?

Surrounded by spectators,

Standing on their feet –

I see them. Do you?

Colorless clowns all looking the same,

With no form,

With no name,

Not of their own…

Sycophants of everlasting green,

Never thinking twice to be mean.

You need a splash of color,

Starting to get pale on the cheek.

Is it me you need?

I can fit just as well for the ride.

I’ll grab onto you,

And your entourage of standing lovers,

Add my crimson blood to your mask,

And you’ll say I’m part of your act.


New Blog for 2022!

There’s a new blog for 2022 coming your way! It’ll be all things poetry, prose, random thoughts, reviews, and more! While I have been busy with The Calm Principles website and expanding the content, tools, and blog on that site, I want to keep a nice home for my regular writing to nestle cozily. While I had to put a pause on my travel writing plans before Covid began, I am happy to start talking about the things I do for recreation and relaxation, alone and with family. All of it is poetry, I guess. Ha!

If you like poetry, come back soon! I have plans to be releasing more poetry books in the upcoming years and I’m working on a short story compilation for late 2022 or early 2023!

I know I keep busy with my music projects, but there’s always room for jello, as they say!!