Thursday, July 5, 2012
1. To enter the golden gateway to my heart, my lady love must be considerate, thoughtful, compassionate and generous. Respect and self-love should be enviable parts of her innate make-up. No pretending or sending a representative to be a "model" soul, until she unsheathes her true self. I don't want her to lose herself in trying to please me. She should know herself. I desire a gentlewoman, one who is not only gentle with herself but with me, others and definitely those who can never repay her kindness. I'm no longer in a combative mode thinking the worst about a person or a situation. I'm faithful, and want her to be the same. I trust that everything is already just fine, is as it should be, and if it isn't, it will be when I bring the quiet stillness of spirit to any uncertainty.
2. My lover has to match my adventurous spirit and want to see the world with me, whether that world is the beauty of discovering American states and cities or the mystical wonders of the globe. Beside her, I want to taste the cuisine of life, to smile and shimmy at strange, new dishes and pucker our faces and words when those dishes are discordant melodies of yuck. She's got to be game, not squeamish, for the unknown. A trailblazer, not a complainer. Filled with a joie de vivre, my lady and I will cultivate oneness in love to encourage one another to great heights.
3. I want passion. Give me, Universe, a deep-running river of "you satisfy a visceral place within me, Baby, and together, we can accomplish the impossible dream." Our passion will fuel our every day experiences, and nothing will ever be the same. The simple art of reading, when we read to one another in the middle of the night, can be foreplay with passion. I want to be passionate about everything about her, and she me; I can already appreciate her voice, her excitement at what makes me shiver in the reading, the revelation of story, and what types of stories take me their and appreciate what happens when two experience life and stories together. In all that we undertake in our love affair, I want the two of us to become one in more ways than being engaged in glorious sex. She should hypnotize me with her walk, her thoughts, her touch, her stare.
4. Humor is a mainstay, a balm, a bridge over troubled water. If she can make me howl with laughter, she can melt my heart, even if it's iced over from something she did or something out of her control. Laughter has the medicinal ability to turn tides and to win wars. Humor requires a certain charm and natural intelligence and a captivating way of seeing the world. Possessing these qualities, my lady love will be able to stand with me in any wind, in the lee of our love, and bend and sway like a tender tree. Humor will allow us to experience life with a heart beating with optimism.
5. She must love music, especially the music from the 60's, 70's and 80's. With the love of music must come the joy and bliss of dancing and dancing with me. Life is too fabulous to dwell in the doldrums. I want her to know the power of music and dance to fall deeper into the Present, to lift us and transcend us to other worlds and times. This love of music and dance can also include learning to appreciate these arts from other countries. She should understand the language of music and dance to make love vertically, to be sensual foreplay that leaves us sweating and wholly captivated with the other long before we recline in the others embrace.
Living a Golden Life,
Wednesday, July 4, 2012
On Tuesday morning, June 26, 2012, in Patterson Hall Atrium in the College of Veterinary Medicine, Nursing, & Allied Health, at 11:30 a.m., my beloved, hard-working father, Claude Moss, Sr., 80 years young, retired from Tuskegee University. He is 80 years young, lively, sharp, witty, spiritual, intelligent and a dynamic orator. My father began his Tuskegee University experience on June 17, 1975, as the Necropsy Technician in the Department of Pathology & Parasitology (now Pathobiology). He served with "dedicated excellence" in this position for 42 years.
As a sidebar, I graduated from Tuskegee Institute High School in 1976. My father's position allowed me to attend Tuskegee Institute (the school's name at the time) for half price, which was a blessing to me and our family. The other half of my tuition was covered more than adequately by scholarships I won for maintaining a 4.0 academic average throughout my studies, which culminated in me matriculating with Highest Honors in the School of Education as an English Education major.
When I look back on my life, I realize how invaluable and instrumental my father was for a major part of my success. He possesses "stick-tuitiveness," resolve, fortitude, honor, dedication and long-suffering. Claude Moss, Sr. is a man who did what was before him to do, no matter what. And I am grateful to be his daughter, a twin to my brother, Claude Jr., who is seemingly a polar opposite of me yet we are one. My father named me Claudia. Wanting me to be named after my great-grandmother, Claudie, yet desiring to up-dated the treasured name, he settled on the name Claudia, a classic, spit-shined version of Miss Claudie!
My mother, Clementine Young, married my father after her graduation from Tennessee State and their union was blessed with 6 children. She made her transition when I was in the ninth grade at Tuskegee Institute High School. Later, my father took Gladys Levett as his wife and was blessed again with three more children. From my 9 siblings, my father has 20 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren...and counting! My siblings are Diane, Claude, Jr., Bernadette, Glenda, Athera Everlener, Lorenzo, Delton and Katarina.
Daddy served in the U.S. Army from 1953 until 1955, after which he was honorably discharged. While serving his country, he fought in the Korean War. During that time, he had his fill of water and will not cross it to this day, which postpones our fabulous foray into Hawaii! Yet we remain hopeful!
Educated in the Macon County School System, Mr. Moss is a faithful, beloved member of the Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church, where he serves on the Deacon Board.
He is an inspiration to me, my family and a plethora of others!
(L to R) My sister Bernadette "Chicken or Bernie" Stitts, my Aunt Marion and my older sister, Diane Moss
(L to R) My lovely nieces, Whitney McCall and Dr. Jeannette McCall, Dr. of Physical Therapy, Diane's two daughters. They have a brother, Kenny McCall.
( L to R) Entrepreneur Glenda P. Halcromb, Whitney, Bernadette, Jeannette, Diane and Aunt Marion
Sister Glenda snapping IPad pictures at the Tuskegee Institute retirement celebration.
Gladys and Daddy enjoying the distinguished ceremony.
Diane smiling for the camera!
Me!! Claudia posing for the flash!
Mikyla and Mann, my adorable niece and nephew, behaving themselves at the ceremony! They are my baby sister Katrina and her beloved Q's children.
Dr. Fredrick E. Tippett, Head of the Department of Pathobiology, honors my father with gifts.
Sisters Glenda and Bernie and Auntie Marion smile for my cell phone!!
My sister Stephanie gives us a pretty laugh along with my adorable niece!
WE LOVE YOU, DADDY!!! THANK YOU FOR BEING OUR PROTECTOR, MENTOR AND FATHER!
Living a Golden Life,
July 4, 2012
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
I am blessed that the Divine has seen fit for me to witness the conjugal bliss of two very special ladies, two beautiful brides, Terri Holley and Cynthia Philips. I photographed their love in a ceremony I shall long remember. The love they share is timeless, awe-inspiring.
Terri's smile brightens any space, brings warmth and beauty and rivals even sparkling, ornate chandelier lights. Cynthia gazes upon her face and suddenly love is defined...without words.
I call this shot "The Cake Kiss," for any morsel shared on the lips of lovers is by far sweeter and more sacred than light piercing the darkest night.
This one is "The Embrace," for how could it be otherwise? To hold and be held takes on a whole new meaning when no one loves you better than she....
Every story is a love story at heart....including theirs, including yours and including mine. And so it is. When I see this picture and others, I think if Celine Dion's song and her words about being in a space where dreams and shadows play.
Today and always, I will live the love in my heart, speak the words in my soul and walk where the fearless refuse to go.
Loving Terri and Cynthia~~
Living a Golden Life,
Monday, July 2, 2012
My knee-baby sister, Miss Glenda, is a whiz at making something out of nothing! She's creative, hilarious, intelligent, generous, sweet and business-minded. The chick has always been an entrepreneur, discovering many years ago that she simply wasn't one for punching another's clock. Glenda Pearl is the first person in our immediate family to open her own store. If you are ever in Stockbridge, GA, go in and tell her TheGoldenGoddess said HELLO!
She is the person to know for all of your embroidery needs. With a visionary eye, she can create any art you can clearly describe. Need school or workplace uniforms? She's got you! Need screen printing on family reunion shirts and other paraphernalia? She's got you! Got a Stepping or Motorcycle Club and need a unique logo on your gear? Miss Halcromb has YOU! And I know I am overlooking the 1,000 other services she provides, but I'm just her writing sister, giving her a SHOUT-OUT on my blog! I mean, really, what do I know?
This is a view inside her store!
When you visit, you will be greeted by Debra, her fabulous assistant, who provides SUPERB SERVICE with a smile!
Here is Glenda Pearl and our sister Bernadette, our entrepreneur/beautician/barber sister, who is a MASTER BARBER!
Miss Glenda is the epitome of fun! She will have you laughing throughout your visit to her store.
Miss Glenda P. on a cruise last year! Goodness knows, they should have paid her! She was the LIFE of the ship!
Step out on FAITH and live the Golden Life you were meant to live!
Sunday, July 1, 2012
This is the gorgeous quilt that my sister made as a retirement gift for our father, Mr. Claude Moss, Sr. A version of my poem is in the middle of the creation. Pictures of my family and our siblings come before and after the poem.
The Measure of a Man
Retirement is a time in a man’s life when the world dictates
We measure him by the life we think he’s led,
So we say
The true measure of a man is how tall he stands
Above his peers
How many treasures his storehouse holds
To determine his weight in riches
How many bonds and funds his accounts boast
How many possessions he’s amassed
Yet others argue his credibility
Lies in the races he’s won and the places he’s been,
Who he knows and the brands he can afford and recommend.
Be that as it may,
Truth rises like mist before us on a steamy summer day.
The true measure of a man is what he believes
How he opens to the Divine manifesting in his every day.
It lies in who he gives a helping hand
Because he knows the poor, dubbed the least of us,
are among God’s chosen too.
Yes, the true measure of a man lies in whether he leaves the world
Better than he finds it
Whether he walks up to fear and embraces those deeds
That buckle his knees.
The true measure of a man is whether he allows
His Heaven Within to guide his steps without.
When judged by a spiritual yardstick,
A man knows the world’s judgment is tolerated
But never needed
For if he has walked by faith
The greatest part of him, as unseen as breath,
Whispers, “Well Done, My Good and Faithful Servant,
And that man walks among men showered in a Grace
That springs not from this place.
© Claudia Moss 6/29/2012
This is a lovely quilt that my knee-baby sister made for a customer to commemorate the love of a mother, grandmother and great grandmother!
The quilts can be purchased at my Glenda P. Halcromb's store, EMBROIDERY MossWear International in Stockbridge, GA.
Live a Golden Life
July 1, 2012