Tag Archives: attitude


Well, here I am, falling in love (again) with my character:

                      Mr. Thomas Higginson.



It is very easy to fall in love with him, at least for me… Just wish I had the power, the magic wand that could make him a real man beside me right now.


I wrote exactly the man I want.  How could I not? 


Obvious where my mind is right now…

Beginning another Monday without this man… Hope that he finds me; hope he’s looking for me.  I’m not going anywhere until he gets here.

Mr. Thomas Higginson, I am waiting for you:









The ten copies that arrived in this box:






As beautiful as the book is, doesn’t mean that it is flawless.

In the table of Contents, “aneurysm” (correct, as it appears in the poem, “Aneurysm of the Firmament”, pp. 231- 235,


and on the Amazon website where you can purchase “Wannabe” says:


“This career-spanning volume by Thylias Moss, one of America’s most revered literary innovators, conveys the dazzling spectrum of her hypnotic poetic output, written over the past thirty-five years and including selections from each previous book as well as previously unpublished new poems.

A poet whose innovations have influenced generations of writers, Thylias Moss is a sort of taxonomist-preacher, whose profound meditation on American culture underlies and propels the dazzling lyrical and impassioned passages she writes in outraged response. This new volume gathers together substantial selections from her previous books and follows them with more than fifty pages of daring new work. Whether in early poems or more recent output, Moss make no promises of smooth sailing: even when they begin with beloved cultural icons (Robert Frost, Dr. Who, the Statue of Liberty), her poems spiral outward, insisting on new perspectives, truths, and realities―particularly of African American experience. For more than three decades, Moss has been a fearless re-inventor of poetry’s possibilities. Her New & Selected is a momentous publication by “a visionary storyteller, a major figure in contemporary American poetry” (Charles Simic).”

However, “each” previous book is not represented.  Absent is “Small Congregations“, a previous collection of New and Selected Poetry.  So, could say “some” previous books are represented, could say “many” previous books of poetry are represented”,  could even say “most” previous collections of poetry are represented, but one is indeed missing! (oops)





Now for a picture of me holding “Wannabe“, I had already tasted the pages! and walked seven miles through my neighborhood with it!



Photo taken by Doug Grayson as I walked seven miles through my neighborhood, so happy was I to receve the book, smelling it, licking the pages, 247 pages including “Higginson Matters in Magnificent Culture of Myopia”, my signature poem, that I will be reading at Columbia University on 30 November at 7:00 pm EST:




Here are the details:


Author photo .png



Poetry Reading: Thylias Moss

Series organized by Timothy Donnelly, Writing

Wednesday, November 30, 2016, 7 pm

Dodge Hall, Room 501


Thylias Moss’s most recent collection, Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code: New and Selected Poems, will be published this fall by Persea. Her eight previous books of poetry include Last Chance for the Tarzan Holler, a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist, and Slave Moth, named Best Poetry Book of 2004 by Black Issues Book Review. Moss is the recipient of a MacArthur “Genius” grant and a fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation, among other honors. She is is Professor Emerita in the departments of English and Art & Design at the University of Michigan and lives in Ypsilanti, Michigan.



This event is presented as part of the Fall 2016 season of Public Programs. To learn more about upcoming events, download a PDF of the complete calendar, view our online calendar and sign up for our mailing list.

Author photo .png



There will be grapes as there were when I read “Higginson Matters in Magnificent Culture of Myopia”, last poem in this book, at the Pulitzer Fine Arts Center in St. Louis, MO, 15 April 2015  (photos  by Carly Ann Faye):


elipsis-254.jpggrapes-from-the-pulitzer.jpgelipsis-250 (grape dissenmination).jpgelipsis-263 (grapes).jpgelipsis-266.jpg


My collections of Poetry, dating back to 1983:



My other books:



Please stay tuned for my information as I have it, including announcements of readings…


Columbia University is only the first of many.


And now, the video poem that is source of the title of this just released collection:




Other video poems related to print poems in “Wannabe“:


“The Glory Prelude”

“The Glory Prelude” was also published as a print poem in “The Offing” but was a video poam first; its original and natrural form seems to me; I always saw this poem, rich visuals, my mother, my own voice singing, you will hear that also.  


“Hypnosis at the Bird Factory”


On youtube as  “Green Light and Gamma Rays”

thr title of th pem in which the excerpt appears is: “Green light and Gamma Ways”


“Green Light and Gamma Ways” as well as this next video segment, “9:08” were part of “The United States of Poetry“, great 5-part film, shown on PBS, and I was lucky eough to be part of that.  




Not part of The United Staes of Poetry, and from earlier collections, the following video poems related to print pieces in “Wannabe”:

Tornado Pi


You may hear me read the following three poems from “Wannabe” as they were recorded for “Poets & Writers”:


Melissa Faliveno, senior editor at  Poets & Writers, has loaded my readings of poem  from “Wannabe “ here:


  1. Blue Coming (in response to Bob Holman‘s “What You Can’t Understand is Poetry Is Connected to the Body Again“)
  2. The Glory Prelude
  3. Me and Bubble Went to Memphis

I hope that you enjoy hearing them.


Here is some footage of me reading “Higginson Matters in agnificent Culture of Myopia“, what has become my signature poem,  largely becase of my own extreme myopia, nearsightdness diagnosed when I was in ninth grade trigonometry class,  last poem, and fittingyly so, in the Wannabe Collection.

 A total and through reconfiquration of Myopia as conceived in a previous collection, when my relationship with myopic seeing was very much dfifferent.  Not just the ophthamological deficits  and departures from norms (that everything departs from just being norm-al) that casued me to have to wear glasses, I still wear them, but the benefits of the distortions themselves, the beauties in that, beauties too often concealed by 20/20 vision which, in my opinion, practically no one has.  


Here, then,  is footage captured of  sharing, a reading of this poem, that I plan to read at Columbia  University on 30 November at 7:00 pm, EST (without the unnatural emphasis placed on “Moss” as two days before this reading, my ex’s niece explained to me how retaining the name , “Moss” their name, indicated that I had not moved on at all, [I have been divorced since 2013, “moss” my name since 1973] I am 62 years old, and the featured image is how I look right now,  without any enhancment.  My own hair. No weave, no relaxer, no extensions; waist-elength, butt-kissing hair, 98 pounds without ever having to diet. Just how it goes):



Well that’s it, please buy the book, available on Amazon, probably other locations also, and please enjoy it! 


Link to my Amazon author page, so that you may see all of my available books.


and here are photos of the covers of all of my published books:

(this will change, of course, as I have more and more books):







Still Waiting & Seeking a Poetry Publisher


Hello all who follow this blog!


I still have yet to receive my ten copies of

Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code” so I cannot yet post any pictures of me in possession of my book.




and here the video poem I made that is source of the title of the collection, my 11th book:


So I still await that, and though “Wannabe’s “jacket professes this: 

This career-spanning volume by Thylias Moss, one of America’s most revered literary innovators, conveys the dazzling spectrum of her hypnotic poetic output, written over the past thirty-five years and including selections from each previous book as well as previously unpublished new poems.”

This collection of New & Selected Poetry DOES NOT contain selections from all of my published collections of poetry, “Small Congregations” , a previous “New & Selected” colection is NOT represented in “Wannabe”, so not “each” previous book, but “many” previous books, “some” previous books, or “most” previous books, but not:”each” for that is a lie.



I remind you how important it is to tell the truth.  

“Wannabe” will be my final book publication wth Persea, so if any of you publishers out there, or f you know of a publisher who might be interested in my poetry,  and would like to represent my work, please contact me, leave a message on this post or look me up through various means.

Let’s just say that after 25 years with Persea, it has become necessary, for various reasons, to part company.  

**Please read any contracts carefully! –I didn’t and you wouldn’t believe what happened to me, because I failed to be vigilant and observant in the past, but I have learned my lesson.

For my poetry, I seek a publisher for my subsequent books.   

Excitement reigns!

I am very excited about my forthcoming –just days now, volume of new and selected poetry! “Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code“! (from Persea Books!)


I haven’t had a new book since 2006, and Tokyo Butter!


Tokyo Butter

Tokyo Butter – a search for  forms of Dierdre (really my  late cousin Hilda).


The cover image is really a 50X USB microscpe scan I made of flowers from Hilda’s Funneral in 2002.  I  grew up with Hilda as if she were my sister… A terrible loss for me… 

I wonder what she would be like now?  She was only 3 months older than me, born 25 November 1953; I was born 27 February  1954.  “Tokyo Butter” explores some of that… I couldn’t believe that all of Hilda (“Deirdre” in the book) was gone from the world, and “Tokyo Butter” is the outcome of my (as yet incomplete) search for her.

casket roseHILDA 2


Here is a version of a video piece I made about a poem in “Tokyo Butter“: The Cultue of Snowmen”:

I really want the Proscope mobile!  Oh what I would capture!

Images I captured with my Proscope Digital microscope:




Hope you’ve already put in your orders at Amazon for “Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code“!



Video poam I made, the source of the title of this book soon to be available:




Also, please check out my Amazon Author Page!!


You can hear me reading three of my favorite poems from”Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code” for Poets and Writers Here:





The three poems I read:

  1. Blue Coming
  2. The Glory Prelude
  3. Me and Bubble Went to Memphis 

Also here “Me and Bubble Went to Memphis” here: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/features/audio/detail/76019


The Glory Prelude video poam here (music composed and performed by Graphic Artist Ansted Moss, Vocals by Thylias Moss who also made the vide poam; contains footage of my mother who has recently been visited by “The Angel of the Lord” –whatever that means.  I cannot compete with “The Angel of the Lord” –noone can):

(my mother is unaware that this footage was captured)

Please don’t tell her, unless you are “The Angel of the Lord”.

she already told me that she’s coming to get me… –I am going to be haunted after her death, so if I make no further posts, you will know that:

  1. I am dead
  2. My mother got me.
  3. My mother succeeded at what Houdini couldn’t
  4. A mother’s love

How mama looks now, as she waits for The Angel of the Lord  (to come back in ways my deceased father can’t):


Mama in wheelchair

(She loves Popeye’s chicken, but isn’t supposed to eat it. Diabetes,  Hypertension, Glaucoma, Thyroid problems, loss of the ability to grasp physical objects (with her right hand especially) and to remember anything, Dementia; loss of hearing, loss of eyesight, unless looking at and/or listening to:  “The Angel of the Lord”, but she’s coming back to get me, a promise she has made to the “Angel of the Lord” –I take this most seriously, because she saw “The Angel of the Lord” as real as anything she has ever seen..

“The Glory Prelude to a Widow Shrine System” is for her, the widow since the death of my father in July 1980.   She says “the only man I  need is Jesus”, so I called a man I liked a lot, before I loved him as I do now, “Jésus”.  My mama with dementia, (I love her, but she still doesn’t know. Just wanted to tell her that I had found a good man; I thought that maybe she would like that.  But no.  

I’ve been divorced since 2013, but makes no difference… Even if nothing goes any furher, I just wanted her to know that I had found someone much better, who doesn’t lie to me, a man I can trust to tell me the truth, whether or not I like it.  He will not deceive me, the most trustworthy man I know. 

and “Hypnosis at the Bird Factory ” (also in “Wannabe”) as a video poam right here:

and Tornado Pi, video poem version of the print poem “Tornados also in “Wannabe“:



Print version of “The Glory Prelude” in The Offing here:




A significant new poem from this collection is: “Higginson Matters in Magnificent Culture of Myopia” and I perform this signture poem from this collection here

(the unnatural emphasis on the word “moss” comes from  a niece of my ex, telling me that I could hardly be moving on with my life, since I still had their name, a name they did not copyright, a name they did not intiate; there are many other “Mosses”; they have no valid claim to the exclusivity of that name:


Speaking of things “trustworthy”, I was all set to believe that an unfortunae  sitution with my publisher was greatly improved; I’m still all set for that, but I was disappointed when I saw on the publisher’s website for my book; a quote about me, this mixed-race woman who would never choose a partner based on his color, or a partner who would choose a woman based on her color; I would not exist without mixing… 

and although the quote which offends me now and all that I’ve tried to accomplish in  my writing is gone from the book jacket, I still name, on the website, “the black truths behind white lies” and am still a writer “who speaks bitterness”… I was disappoined to see that, because of the inaccuracy, and immediaetely wote an email to my poetry editor

That is not who I am; I speak TRUTH, no matter what color it is.   And if “black” (a part of me but not all of me) is so powerful that whatever is “black” at all, even a tiny potent, powerful drop; if so powerful that I  can not avoid using a black lens to interpret everything, then everything I see automatically becomes “black” because I see it, and everything  I say automatically become “black” because I say it, and everything I hear automatically becomes “black” because I hear it, and everything I do, automatically becomes “black” because I do it, and everything I touch automatically becomes “black” because I “touch” it, and everything I feel automatically becomes “black,”because I feel it,  and everthing I eat automatically becomes “black” because I eat it,

 then there is no need for me to preface anything I think; anything I feel, anything I do with “black” since I cannot do anything that is not black, so when I think of quantum phyiscs, quantum physics becomes black; every form of math, everything I’ve written here is black; that’s how potent black is, one drop and black heaven is the reward!


I continue to think these black thoughts, as I thought them at the University of new Hampshire where in a class for those teaching English composition, the subject was “How To Eliminate Vagueness” in student wiring, and one TA observed that when a sudent writes the word, “black”, the student likely means something else, such as, and this was agreed upon (worth noting that I was the ony visibly “black” person in the room); agreed upon that the student meant “irreversible damage” , so I wrote this poem, for instructors of English 401 at the University of New Hampshire, originally published in Callaloo, then in my book, Pyramid of Bone, nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award:

about Pyramid of bone, Langdon Hammer says this: 

Although many of Moss’s poems discuss race and gender, these subjects are, explains scholar Langdon Hammer, simply “starting points for her work…her poetry makes such facts of identity seem unfamiliar, their meanings not to be predicted, unavailable to the naked eye.” Known for startling metaphors and vivid imagery, Moss’s work demonstrates an expansive imagination that seeks to connect at times wildly disparate subjects”

Pyramid of bone

Book by Thylias Moss

To Eliminate Vagueness”

 instructions: substitute  irreversible damage for blacwherever it occurs



In the red-legged locust’s black raids upon midwest soybeans,

in their illicit transmission of tapeworms and parasites

to quail, turkeys, and guinea fowl,

in all the black calendar days that are supposed

to indicate the ordinary.


In operating rooms body parts black with gangrene

are excised and trash cans seem to fill with dead crows.


There’s a black crust two miles thick in Soweto, some on bread,

around eyes, most on the streets where blood dried

into its own monument.


Then my mother’s black face nothing can soften, the sweating,

the forgetting to sleep, the solidarity with anyone troubling,

the compassion only I knew she felt hugging a radio, singing

spirituals, sequestering herself in her widow’s bedroom

praying for women unable to pray.


And what of Europeans, what of Asians and Latinos who are


damaged, whose gangrened minds should be excised but who are

   not black?



One day I noticed my mother had poured her face onto mine

and had given me spirituals and lullabies.

I sang them when baskets of black clouds dumped

their transparent flowers over the convent


and the nuns’ basic black didn’t get wet

and they carted the flowers home in wheelbarrows

and arranged them like lullabies

and wept silently


as we were weeping, mother and daughter together

in my father’s old rocker, the damage already done.


                                            for Gary and the English 401 staff


                                                       Thylias Moss

Originally published many years ago in Callaloo, then in my award-winning collection “Pyramid of Bone” (University of Virginia Press, 1989)


and listen to me read, on the Poetry Foundation site: “The Pampering of Leora” 


and this video poam (product of act[s] of making) I made”Cosmic Seduction” is just another black thing I do:

Please enjoy as much of this truth as you can.  I thank you and  am grateful, always.


Included for someone special 

all  for him


His if he wants it, the most trustworthy, most deserving  man I know. 




A Most Special Hat

Honoring the hat of a friend
that I usually wear on my three-miles walks (as seen above, listening to what is now my favorite poem)

I do not know the history of this hat, don’t know when he got  it or why
so do not know how often my friend wore it or what hats may have taken its place…

I do not know how important the hat may have been to him, but the hat helps me walk, so please think of these as selfies, as I wore the hat in so many of the photos I took of myself.

A power hat; that is, I feel so empowered when I wear it –today I took off the hate and photographed it by itself, without me.  But this is my hat now, and I feel so privileged to wear it,

so IN HONOR OF THE HAT ITSELF, Golden Coach by Dobbs, “Hughes, Hatcher, Suffrim” Detroit:

the hat itself, beautiful without me, a poem on my head, on top of the head that has learned to think I’m at the top of the world, which is where the HAT places me,

for when I wear it, I feel MOST SPECIAL ALSO

Thank you for this Most Special Hat –that inspires me endlessly…. I plan to wear it as I work on finishing my romance novel tomorrow… 








This hat has become my crown.


Possible Author Photos:

I attach here, three possible author photos for “Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code” (available for pre-order from Amazon)


Red Dress Code-01

Red Dress Code-02

Red Dress Code-03


(I am 62 years old! –and proud of it. No makeup in these photos, by the way… No enhancements of the hair –have to say it, because I’m proud of this while it lasts! –no weaves, no hair pieces, no wig and no extensions, not even any relaxer! –only genetics! -and we all have that)


Almost done with reviewing the PDF of the book!  how exciting all of this is becoming! 

Photographer is Ansted Moss, his assistant was, is the wind..


Please stay tuned!

end of the year, prelude to 2016

The end of 2015 is upon us, and I, for one, am quite glad.    

A most uneven year in so many ways.


For the most part, I am in a most peculiar place.  Too much that matters is coming unglued, I “think” –and that is part of the problem right there: “overthinking” 


I don’t know much for sure, but I feel safe in saying that I will have at least one new book in 2016; I’ve already seen a prototype cover, and I like it… “Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code” –my New and Selected is going to happen.  My first new book since 2007, and, of course, I hope it’s considered for several awards.  And I also would like to WIN (at least) one of these nominations none of which have happened.


I control none of that. 


And an exhibit  of my video poam “The Glory Prelude

at the Pulitzer Fine Arts Gallery in St, Louis, Missouri, exhibit called  “Ellipsis” from 15 April 2016 – 2 July 2016, music composed and performed by Ansted Moss, my son and creative force behind his invention still-in-the-making, Knaknox 

My son will be joining me at the Pulitzer for the opening, as the music wouldn’t be in my film without his making it.  I am very excited about this.


Will post more details as I have them. Pictures also.



And more than anything I’m hoping for agency representation! –this will happen; only a matter of when and which agency…

NKH is coming!

–This book cannot be stopped. I hope that NKH wins awards also.  I look forward to the NKH movie... I look forward to the myriad interviews.  So many dreams on a book for which I have no contract yet, but I will in 2016! –the year that changes my life, improves my life. 


And for NKH, the current and definitive version, that an agent is considering;

there will be no word on the status of representation (but there will be agency representation –I ‘ve been saying this for some time, but this book, this “story for the ages” to quote one trusted reader [the most important reader of all], will be represented and sold–)

but not in time to conclude 2015 (I wish it would be…. I must be more patient), but in NKH there is a reference to Aretha Franklin’s “Natural Woman” and I must include a version here, Kennedy  Honors, 2015:



The coincidence is amazing, but far less so than this performance.

I am so encouraged by this. 


And I hope that a connection I cherish so deeply emerges from this rubble unscathed…. Life is not easy….  


I want my close friend to remain my close friend.  Always.  At least my close friend, if not, someday more (my hope that I do not keep secret at all in NKH).


Of course, my close friend has a life of his own, worries and concerns of his own… I have no holds on him, and the holds he has on me, are holds of my own making… I want to keep them intact, for whatever happens or doesn’t.  Friendships are not static; this one is dynamic at least.  This one has been growing every “whichway” –as it should. Into what, we cannot say. And when, we cannot say; there is no more than a chance but without a chance there would be, there could be nothing.


It should not become static… 


I continue to dream big. I continue to hope.  As does my [close] friend. As does my son. As does, everyone capable of dreaming and hoping.  We all have flaws, but I hope manageable forms.  Just wait… Just be patient…  Answers are right around the corner… I can nearly reach out and grab them… A fully “natural” process… 

I look forward to 2016! Please join me! –and keep a watchful eye out for NKH, please… that book of incredible passion!

that nearly impossible book, but 2016 is the year the heretofore impossible become possible! Fork on!


Here’s to patience:


Agent Prospects!

It is my distinct pleasure to announce that I now have three agent prospects for this sex-positive feminism that this  manuscript offers:

“Looking for Forker Gyrl”


NKH: New Kiss Horizon


by Adorabilis Flapjack[1] Tardis[2]

(Thylias Moss)


[2] TARDIS from wikipedia, < https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TARDIS (Time And Relative Dimension In Space) a most unusual, living space ship, female space vehicle of time travel, etc.

I just have to read it again and fix any issues I may find! –this book will NOT BE HELD BACK by my poetry publisher: Persea Books although I do have friends there, but this book is potentially beyond anything Persea can possibly do, and if the publisher decides to sue me for an apparent breech of contract for my “Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code“, so be it! 

Won’t be the first time Persea has filed litigation against another publisher of mine, Ecco Press,  the would-be publisher of Small Congregations ! –as was attempted when “Rainbow Remnants in Rock Bottom Ghetto Sky” was a new winner of the National Poetry Series Open competition (please scroll, my name is on the list for 1990)

rainbow remnantsAnd Ecco Press approached me about doing a collection of New and Selected Poetry: “Small Congregations”

Small Congregations

and this collection was to include some poems in “Rainbow Remnants” and Persea, reluctantly agreed, and carefully worked out which poems, Ecco Press could use in the new and Selected, and all was fine, until I received the galleys for “Small Congregations” and corrected something that only I knew; three additional poems were actually re-visions that bore no resemblance to the original versions published in “Rainbow Remnants”, but I knew the complex relationship of the trail of forking influence, so I corrected the galleys in the name of truth! –something I believe in and try to practice at all costs.  

I would rather give my life for truth, and, face it, I am not immortal, than to live forever in a heap of lies! 

So Persea attempted to  sue Ecco Press for contract violation! –I was ordered to bring all versions of the disputed poems to court! –yes; I was served a subpoena with just that order… This story grew preposterous… I was even headed for the Oprah Winfrey show, as I was about to go to jail –as I wanted to! –for re-visioning poems! 

Of course, the interim versions did not exist.. I used a computer and simply typed over the changed lines.  So I set about trying to manufacture interim versions, story made the New York Daily News, and the Wall Street Journal, reporter came to my home in Ann Arbor –obviously, this was before I divorced, and interviewed me, about that ridiculous story: a lawsuit over poetry; more money spent on legal fees, and lawyers, than any money these publishers would ever make on sales of their books –all because I WAS HONEST! 

Here’s the Wall Street Journal Article:

(notice the drawing of me)


After this, Persea settled out of court with Ecco, and I missed my chance to go on the Oprah Winfrey show! –I was looking forward to having a police record, and saying I was incarcerated for re-vising poems, killing only original versions, my own poems!

–Ludicrous isn’t it?

Love is the way! –as in this story on CBS News: One bride blue two dads equals heartwarming moment  

Believe me, I KNOW (some of –one can never “know” “all” of anything; perhaps the largest and best lesson of “limited fork theory“, tines and tines tangle and re-tangle on some scale in some locations wherever there can be locations, including imaginations, and just thinking about this, in some location for some duration of time can completely transforms how one makes!

A Lesson hard learned in “Atonement” –what a film about dangers of lying! –oh what a teenage girl “Briony Tallis”

Briony Tallis

who didn’t understand the sex she saw between her older sister Cecilia and a man Cecilia loved and who also loved her, but not the young Briony, who was jealous and lied, lied, calling Robbie a sex maniac, implicating him in the rape of her cousin  Lola  –entirely false!

“Atonement” Trailer:


Here to give you a sense how typed lies made perfect music for this film:

So if one of these two prospects I have for an agent, thanks to former students at Philips Academy, Kinn-Ming Chan de Velarde and Aaron Hamburger in particular, prospects for NKH are better than ever! –and if Persea decides to sue someone, me perhaps, will look bad for them to rake over the coals this 61-year-old woman with MS, still recovering from a repaired ruptured aneurysm when it was doubtful that I would even survive, same night that Amy Winehouse died, I think public sympathy would be with me, and the story could provide useful publicity…. 

That there might be too many books on the market by me, sounds like a delightful problem, and fine with me if reviewers are confused… I love a conundrum anyway… I’m willing to risk it.

Here is an excerpt of the story “Mongongo Drupe” -a version of which is in NKH; story was published in Callaloo:

Here is “some” [not “all”] info about this story:

NKH includes a chapter, based on what was published here, ans a story in Callaloo  that you may read about on this site: http://muse.jhu.edu/login?auth=0&type=summary&url=/journals/callaloo/v038/38.1.moss.html

Mongongo Drupe” a story that is, in different form, part of the above mentioned manuscript.

Here I paste the info from the website: In “Mongongo Drupe” “Thomas W. Higginson” was called  “Jésus” by the way.

“I dress for a walk, pull out my ‘Black Girls Rock’ t-shirt for that. A short black pencil skirt—cotton blended with latex— size ex-small (really hugs my figure, that Jesús has seen, but he hugs it better, much better than the skirt), black sheer pantyhose (I’m already thinking about his removing them), rainbow socks, black shoes that Jesús likes. Slight heel.

Jesús wears jeans, black, sneakers, also black. That morning he borrows one of my scrunchies for his ponytail—black scrunchie, and uses my Mongongo oil on his hair, hair that I’ve enjoyed playing with so much—I like the silkiness of it—mine is silky too, but has more density, Indian hair. Seems to me that he likes it, his playing with it says so, and that silk pillowcase has made a significant difference—no rollers at all. Just a touch (few spritzes) of Mongongo oil (by Ouidad)

and brush, brush, brush—hair below my shoulders, nearly midway down my back, cage for my head.

Jesús seems to really like the word “Mongongo”—says it several times, sings it.

I like very much when he does that, his own way of druping—I’m not the only one who drupes in this connection.

He wears an olive green vest, long-sleeved shirt. He looks cool. I don’t really care what he wears—as long as he likes it, as long as he thinks that I’ll like it too—after all, he is dressing for me, just as I’m dressing for him. I decided what to bring based on how I thought he would react, and I’m assuming something similar in his decisions—never did I imagine that I was the only one thinking of my partner’s desisions in how he, how I would be seen. I assumed that he was thinking similarly, in hoping that he would be physically attractive to me.

But now, brunch at River Roast. We walk there, not far from the Mandarin Moon.

Live blues—Toronzo Cannon.

We sit outside, next to each other.

I look deeply into his blue eyes . . . He sings to me, and I sing to him . . .

Sun comes out behind me, the Chicago River, and there’s blue now to match his eyes. I never had a thing for “blue eyes” until I saw Jesús—wouldn’t matter except that his eyes are blue: Sky-Blue Jesús—perfect setting: music and food, water, Jesús, and Dream Baby—together . . .

Weather is perfect!

He orders shrimp and grits. One plate. I don’t need an entire separate order. Jesús has to get used to how little I eat and still feel full (but I can eat a lot of him). Tastes good, Jesús—of course, I also really like the shrimp.

Jesús, of course, eats more than me. He’s a big guy!—and he can easily lift me!—can’t explain how exciting it is, to be lifted up and have his hands all over me, all under whatever, if anything, I’m wearing, then land on the bed perfectly, so that he can do more work on me, that dildo named Jesús, and just his hands, his cock—which I prefer to the toys and tools, but that’s not the point. It’s that airborne, for a minute, sex! I love sliding down his body up against his hardness. Seems he must have practiced to have these acrobatics work out so perfectly . . .

Guess we’re just ideal sexual partners. Guess I am a Dream Baby. Guess he is Jesús, provider of miracles, such as the miraculous sex.

We both have some coffee. He remembers how much I like chocolate, and I order “Fat Elvis” for dessert (Jesús himself has been better dessert for me). River Roast’s Fat Elvis is just okay. Wouldn’t order it again from there. We dance a little bit to the music of the band —wish we could also go dancing . . . but we’ve danced in other ways.

Next time.

Next time.

Next time.

We walk and walk, go to The Chicago..” keep reading in Callaloo.

Photos of me:

Thylias Moss (Forker Gryle) at Hannan Cafe- photo taken by WL Bush copySelfie Friday #3 

Selfie 1_11October 2015

hair treated only with Mongongo oil by Ouidad (you can buy it on Amazon, a little cheaper there.  As I keep saying, no wigs, no weaves, no hairpieces, no extensions –WYSIWYG

Just making some finishing touches; this book will be –no, IS, too good to turn down….Manuscript is coming to an agent! I have three possibilities! Surely I can’t lose on all three.

I feel very good about this! Can’t wait to complete this final revision… And  “Higginson” himself will be pleased also! –a most special friend  

You can see me performing a signature poem from the new collection: “Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code” (Persea Books, September 2016) : “Higginson Matters in Magnificent Culture of Myopia” here:

and here on Vimeo:

and on Facebook  –hope that you enjoy it and look forward to “Looking for Forker Gryl” –I know I do; I’ve waited all my life for this; all my life!

Detroit Lit Walk all –TOMORROW! –YES! 19 SEPTEMBER 2015!


I, Thylias MOSS! –Yes, MOSS!– am so pleased to say, so absolutely delighted to report, that the Detroit Lit Walk, hosted by ML Liebler is TOMORROW!!!  I will be reading at 1:00 pm EST, in N’Namdi’s in Detroit. 52 E. Forest Ave. Detroit, MI 48201

19 September 2015!

Actual Detroit lit walk poster2

At last I will get to read my favorite poem in which I claim the name MOSS! –AS MY OWN! –a name I’ve had for 42 years!

I made the mistake of telling the niece of my ex that I could not move forward, while being shackled to the past, so I was letting that baggage go, and one of her cousins pointed out that I was hardly unloading baggage, since I still retained THEIR NAME “MOSS, a name they did not invent, a name to which they hold no copyright, legally mine: IT IS MY NAME! –the IRS knows who I am! –when I was working, my paychecks always were issued to me: THYLIAS MOSS!

I HAVE BEEN SINGLE AS OF 18 September 2013, after being involved with a man for 44 years; I’m 61 right now; yes I married as a teenager; I’m celebrating being single for the first time as an adult…

The poem I’m reading, that peach of a poem at N’NAMDI’S IN DETROIT, HAS A LINE I CAN’T WAIT TO READ!:

…in fact, I’m named

for this slightly less than magnificent effect

–even rocks put onmoss

I won’t just be reading: “HIGGINSON MATTERS IN MAGNIFICENT CULTURE OF MYOPIA”, I will be reclaiming my name: “MOSS“! –I will make that name more mine than ever before! –I will be cementing my very identity… Every book I’ve published, and there are ten of them:

Tokyo Butter - a search fr Dierdre

Tokyo Butter – a search for Dierdre

Last Chance for the Tarzan HollerSlave Moth coverrainbow remnantsSmall CongregationsPyramid of BoneI Want to BeAt RedbonesHosiery Seams on A Bowlegged WomanTale of A Sky-Blue Dress

–all of my books are by: Thylias MOSS! –including my forthcoming collection: “Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities’ Red Dress Code”, New and Selected in which “HIGGINSON MATTERS IN MAGNIFICENT CULTURE OF MYOPIA” will appear in print form! –but tomorrow will be the world premiere of this peach of a poem! –I can’t believe that I even wrote

video poam of the same name

this  very magical poem!

I am steadily working on building a new life for myself. Despite what hurts, what helps, and what sometimes does both. I was stupid to stay so long in a relationship I knew wasn’t right practically from the beginning! He was cheating on the teenager me right from the beginning –I found out two weeks after the wedding, and yet I stayed –for forty years… Just glad to have survived and to be out of that marriage… And now… My own poetry is suffering, my new and selected volume due out in the fall of 2016 will contain a variation of a poem (“Magnificent Culture of Myopia“) written while I was married (Published in Tokyo Butter, and my “signature” poem about myopia seems to be about him, and I can’t allow my new book, first book since 2006, to appear to center on him; even my myopia has changed, optic-neuritis, now, part of my MS… I have submitted a revision, and at least it was true at the time of the revision. I can live with more recent –temporary– truth, than I’m willing to live with old truth no longer true at all, and not in my poetry where truest forms of me reside… I remain hopeful that newer temporary truths will prevail so my 2016 “WANNABE HOOCHIE MAMA GALLERY OF REALITIES’ RED DRESS CODE” NEW & selected (emphasis on NEW) –to be published by Persea Books— will steer me towards newer forms of life that I become able to find….


I have learned that my poetry editor agrees with me concerning the revision; a version of the revision WILL BE! in my new collection, my editor at Persea,  said the re-vision:”HIGGINSON MATTERS IN MAGNIFICENT CULTURE OF MYOPIA” is

“a ‘very’ impressive poem. Amazing work, you!”

–I could feel it as I wrote it! Embedded in the words and my need for those words to be heard! –and they were!

That tremendous music!

I really had the sense of surviving all of what I’ve been through!

Poetry indeed has such power!

Poetry is saving my life!

The truest forms of me can learn how to breathe again through that poem! My editor read the poem and felt it too!

A surging of current!

A form of merger between multiple ways of trying to understand, trying to see “myopia!”

All books by Thylias MOSS! –and it is Thylias MOSS who will read tomorrow, all who can, please come and take part in this claiming, this embrace of my name! –I t will be a peach of an experience, and I cannot wait for this pleasure, to feel my name warm on my tongue, to shout my name into the audience…   It will truly be like naming myself for the very first time,

O the power of a name!

Here’s to “Higginson” whoever he is or isn’t, wherever he is or isn’t –even if I just dreamed him up entirely, he is still a better man for me, especially if he is a man of my dreams –I know how to dream pretty good…