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The Great Fall

Once it was a beacon of light,

This shining hill dressed as a white knight.

Now it only brings hate,

Laying prone on the ground, and heavy as a freight.

I find myself mystified,

maybe naive, and wide-eyed as a victorian bride.

How far did we backslide?

When did I lose my greatest ally?

The contradictions are clear,

yet we still clamor and believe all because of fear.

I stand here,

Waiting, helpless, praying that you’ll appear.

Isn’t that right dear?

Won’t you loan me a few of your tears?

You see I’ve ran out,

When humanity chose the coward’s way and took the bailout.

There are no rebels here.

They lament, yet still adhere.

It’s troubling to see this clear!

Maybe it’s too soon,

Maybe it’s too late,

But soon you’ll see the weight,

compliances that morphed into mandates.

-N

Pink Horizon

I took off the mask,

Basked in the knowledge that I am free.

I have been liberated,

the invisible chains have been broken,

I’m no longer worth a token.

The toxicity of this realm has stifled me.

Forced me to dwell in places that I never meant to be.

In, win, depends,

You know the drill.

I used to hold myself back,

So they’d cut me some slack.

I’m past all of that.

Going into a new year,

I’ve made a vow to be honest with myself.

To live my best life,

else I end up detesting myself.

-N

*Make sure to check out my podcast where I talk about all things poetry!

https://anchor.fm/nicole-renee5

Unplugging From The Matrix….

I have used this blog to vent my frustrations, promote my books/podcast, and connect with so many different people from everywhere. It is a place where I have grown as a writer, and it makes me smile to see how far I have come when I click on old archives. It is also a place where I have felt comfortable being able to talk about issues currently facing well, me.

This is that time.

December 2016 I graduated with my Master’s degree. I was a happy, if naive twenty-six year old black woman who was determined to have a career in the workplace. Something I’d always dreamed of ever since I became entertainment editor of my high school newspaper. That January, I was ready. I prepped for interviews, applied to wherever a company would take a shiny-new master of science in human resource management degree holder. It took a few weeks, but I was able to get a once in a lifetime interview with San Francisco International Airport. It was an eye-opening experience to be sure. I was selected for the prestigious position of San Francisco Airport Fellow and I thought it was the best thing in the world!

Finally I would be joining hundred’s of others in the mad dash to and from work. I dressed smartly, even lost substantial weight before I started and was pleased overall. I had no clue what I was doing, but I figured, “Hey. school taught me that I can learn anything with studying, hard work, and dedication. So anything is possible, right?”

That mindset was true in some aspects.

In others it wasn’t.

It was a year program, that not only exposed you to the aviation industry, but helped train you for a position at the airport. Everyday for one year I told myself if I could just get to the end of the program I would be okay. I could make it. Then I wouldn’t have to worry about money as much, and I could be happy. In all my favorite films, it’s what happened anyway. The lead protagonist would work hard, handle the fire-breathing dragon lady (The Devil Wears Prada) and at the end get the job he/she truly wanted. Only that wasn’t the case. I had a helpful advisor which was good, but the bad definitely outweighed the benefits in my situation.

The subtle micro-aggressions were terrible. Finding out that people were talking behind my back was like getting a slap to the face, but what hurt more than anything, was being made to feel as if I were stupid. As if I was too illiterate to properly comprehend what they were training me to do. Because of it my mental health suffered. The program started for me in March, and I made it to the one year mark, quitting a couple of months afterward. I never thought one could feel PTSD from a job, but this was my first real taste of, “The real world.” My father, being a former supervisor for a very well-known company drove me almost daily to work. He saw my moods change the closer we got to my job and he would always smile and say, “If you can’t do it anymore, then don’t.” I always felt that he could look into my soul and see how much I didn’t want to be there. But I still went. Being the ever optimistic person I am I consoled myself with the knowledge that one day, I will finally get what I’ve worked so hard for.

That never came.

Circumstances arose in which I quit. I came home early, and I remember feeling so defeated. I sat outside a lot and sometimes found myself staring at the ground, the mountains, and in some cases nothing. I would think of something terrible at work and have sudden bursts of anger which was directed at my parents. They didn’t deserve my outrage, yet they took it in stride, always consoling me when I came down from my episodes. Even my little sister who came down from college saw the hopeless despair I was wrapped up in and took pity on me.

I quit in 2018 and for several months afterward I stayed out of the workforce. I began to write feverishly, and it was the one thing that brought me immense joy.( Well that along with foreign soap-operas.) Through that pain I was able to create something beautiful. My very first historical romance book that I published myself on Amazon. I figured out how to create my website, and I was even able to pay for a PR company to promote it. I felt so proud of that I was able to do that, and it felt like a big screw you to anyone who thought I was incapable of accomplishing something huge. It was my passion, it had always been, but it took me facing what I thought I wanted to realize what I actually needed.

A couple of months later I figured it would be a good time to earn some money so I began a tentative job search. Much more aware I went in with the single-focus of working for money. I wasn’t looking for job-security or comfort. I wasn’t looking for friends, or a place to advance my career. I wasn’t affiliated with any organizations or sororities so I knew that I wouldn’t be making any advancements based on connections. I was just a normal twenty-eight woman looking for income to make her car payment.

I found nothing.

I applied to so many places yet they all turned me down. Gave me no specific reasons, other than they moved forward with other people. I was baffled at the response and even told some managers to please check my credentials, but the answer stayed the same.

I do remember that I applied to a job near my neighborhood during that transition period. It was a management position, entry level at a clothing store. The interview went surprisingly well, and I thought it was a great way to get my foot in the door of management. But, I showed up the next day not for management work, but for a regular sales associate position.

Now I want to be clear; there is nothing wrong with a cashier position, but my job history and resume alone would make me over-qualified for the position. I worked at that particular store for one day and never came back. I thought I would cry my eyes out, but I found myself feeling the opposite. Instead of tears I became upset, and slightly bitter. I worked so hard only to be given a position of putting clothes on a rack. Six years of school just down the drain in my opinion.

Since 2018 I have steadily looked for work in between writing, but no one ever thought to hire me.

Then the pandemic happened.

People were worried about money and work, but I found that year to be a relaxing one. I had been through so much, and now the world was paused, forcing people (including myself) to examine their lives, I found myself writing more. I published three more books, and I spent more time with my family. I finally realized what was important, and that was worth millions to me. I still held out hope that someone would hire me. After all, everything had switched to remote so I was in the same boat as everyone else, right?

Wrong.

There was a brief bout of hope on the horizon, though.

In July 2021 a company reached out to me. It was a start-up and the goal was to help students with college preparatory. I was excited because after I was hired I was given the position of online English Instructor. I was thrilled. To have the chance to finally be in the education field had been my dream. The former supervisor explained to me that they were waiting for students and for the school year to start, so she urged me to be patient. I had been waiting for years, so I didn’t mind waiting several more weeks.

But the waiting turned into months.

Which turned into the former supervisor quitting and me finding out about it two weeks ago (Yep seven months!) after inquiring myself.

I found that job on LinkedIn and figured while waiting for the education company to start I would find something else. I completed the entire profile, the app called me an all-star profile and I was starting to get views. The website even matched me to jobs and told me that I qualify for numerous positions.

Only I got no call-back.

After several months I started to see that no one was calling me back. The news on the television wasn’t matching my own efforts of looking for work, of millions of Americans not wanting to work because I did want employment yet no one would give me a second glance.

I am no one special. I am just a thirty-one year-old educated Black woman. However, I started to do research and was finding out that a lot of other black men and women (millennials) were facing similar situations such as myself. I didn’t want to be one of the people who kept allowing this to happen only to break me. I even saw stories where other women went insane with the constant back and forth from companies only to be let down and unable to properly function.

So, I decided to become self-employed.

I created a more professional website for books. I have always loved poetry and I am so proud of my podcast Expressions and Definitions finally getting the attention it deserves. And I am proud to be making certain financial moves with my family which makes me thank God for giving me the family that I have. It’s not at all what I thought I’d be doing, but I find myself loving writing and create fun and new podcast.

I came up here today to say that I quit.

I finally quit believing in the hype of corporate America. I quit believing that my, “dream job,” is at some company from nine to five. One should not dream of work, but of a passion that they can turn into profit, or a way to live comfortably.

I deleted any app that would be linked with a job.

I deleted my LinkedIn post.

I deleted my online portfolio and gave away my professional clothes.

This year in 2022, I will do what makes me happy and not what society tells me. I will not be forced to work in subpar conditions that affect my mental state and I will not be spoken to in a way that deems me less than human. Because I am human, and I deserve respect.

I don’t know if this helps anyone, but if you have gotten this far and are reading this, I want you to know that you are not alone. You are special, kind and you are loved. You are smart, and you can do anything you put your mind too. You are not being too difficult for demanding what you deserve because baby, you are so worth it.

I love you all so much and we will talk soon.

-N

Sadist

You left me for a while.

But you came back.

I have no slack.

I can’t believe what you’ve made me feel.

What I’ve written,

What you’ve made me do.

My heart was broken.

I want you in too many ways.

I can’t say no though.

It’s not good for me.

This is a drug.

But I have to take another hit.

Just once more.

Then I promise I’ll go.

Promets juste que tu-

*Excerpt from my poetry book Love, Undefined By Nicole Renee. You can purchase it here.

Calling All Poets!

So, I have a podcast.

It’s on Anchor and Spotify. The name of my podcast is Expressions and Definitions by Nicole Renee. My station is themed around all genres of love. Hate, longing, betrayal, first-love, acceptance, self-love. I successfully interviews my first guest and it will air tomorrow. However, I would like to interview more up and coming poets. On Wednesday I would read your work, talk about it, and such, and that next Monday I would have you on my show to talk about your work. If you write any poems geared toward love and want a bit of exposure, then please contact me here, at my website or email. I will leave them in this email. Thank you so much and I look forward to hearing from all of you!

-Nicole

Author website: www.authornicolerenee.com

email: nicolew301@gmail.com

I HAVE A PODCAST!

YAY!

So, I have a podcast. It’s available on Spotify. It’s called Expressions and Definitions by Nicole Renee. I read poems centered around love and interviews new poets on what love means to them. I posted this here because I wanted to seek out poets. If you have some poems themed around love, (It can be sad, anger, betrayal) please contact me as I’d love to feature you!

-Nicole

Still

Bleeding,

Broken,

Mentally unstable.

My alarm clocks goes off for work.

Throw the covers off,

Try to ignore the cough,

Put on a smile and make sure to not question the boss.

There’s a pain in my chest,

Sound, wait, I must get dressed.

I’m distressed,

pressed, tested to the umpteenth degree.

The melanin in my skin shows otherwise.

I should be grateful,

Thankful,

In all aspects respectful.

I felt my heart stop,

my suit and heels are a prop.

“Where is my laptop?”

I can’t be late for work,

I can’t be late for life,

I can’t take a day off.

Because,

Because,

Because.

I still have to go on.

I still have to move forward.

Too many people depend on me.

Too many people need me,

Don’t you see?
I cannot be.

I was not afforded the luxury to only exist.

I must persist,

else I become dismissed.

Just one more day,

A few more minutes,

and then it’ll all be over.

-N

Undeniably Yours

I’m so happy.

I published my fifth romance book this week. Just in time for the holidays. I don’t get a lot of reviews, and I don’t think I ever will, but the feeling of accomplishment I get whenever I finish telling a story, a romantic one at that, gives me such pleasure. I live so much in my head I fear that it’s where I prefer to be most of the time. Anyway, I wanted to let anyone know who is still following this poetry blog that it’s available on Amazon. And that my author website is finished as well. I will leave the information below.

Happy Holidays, and stay safe.

-N

Undeniably Yours by Nicole Renee: https://amzn.to/3mu8JLO

Official Author Website: https://bit.ly/3H4XyRI

The Unseen

I wonder,

If you ever think be-yonder.

I stand in front of this mirror,

Unsure of this face in front of me.

I think I’ve lost the sight.

Something’s not right.

M’aimeras-tu si tu voyais le vrai moi ?

Just a question,

Or if you’re afraid, it could be a suggestion.

-N

The Inner Thoughts

I don’t think anyone really knows me.

I put on so many different faces, Sometimes I can’t even tell that it’s me.

I wish someone would give me a momentary peace.

I have so many thoughts,

Some troubling you see.

Are we just pretending?

Fitting in a world that seems never-ending?

Should I rip off the mask and let everyone see.

The true me?

Do I even know her?

Or was she crafted from months of taking on another persona?

-N