Earthen Witch, Poetry

Meanings

“And that night, I learned
what it meant to fall in love.”

In the mourning, I knew the truth. It wasn’t something I ever wanted to know. You see, I needed to grieve what was left behind all those years ago. Somehow, along the way, I’d forgotten just how much I’d lost. And I couldn’t help but think all that loss would mean I would lose you too. Who would want to be with someone with so much damage. More than just the physical scars, it went down to the marrow in bones. My emotions were tainted. Mentally, what remained was broken in a way nothing could ever fix. But you stayed. You assured me you would never let me down. That you were by my side for good, no matter how much bad happened.

© Sarah Doughty

That night, I learned
what it meant to have a friend.
I learned what it meant
to fall in love.

Loosely based on the events of my
first novel, Just Breathe.

Poetry

Burn Me Down

“And oh, what a sweet burn it was,
being with you.”

Being with you felt like dancing with the devil in a downpour of freezing rain. It was exhilarating and every nerve in my body was screaming from the onslaught of emotions and sensations. It felt like you’d struck a match and my entire body was engulfed in flames in a matter of seconds. And oh, what a sweet burn it was. I could turn to ash and not bother to care. Because in those moments, while we were together, it was worth it.

© Sarah Doughty
2018

It was so worth it.

Poetry

Here To Stay

“I know you’re scared.
And I know you’ve been hurt.
But I’m not going anywhere.”

“No,” he said, “you can’t take the easy way out and run from this.” His hand reached toward mine and he put my hand against his chest, right over his heart, stopping the hurricane of doubts in my head. “I know you’re scared. I know you’ve been hurt. But I love you. I’m not going anywhere. And this heart beats only for you.”

Words escaped me as I tried to choke back the tears — not just the helpless ones, the ones that streamed down my face as I broke my own heart — but, for once, there were tears of happiness. As my heart mended its cracks, I didn’t hesitate. I crashed into him and hugged him tight. His arms held me up. Held me together. And I knew I’d never have to be afraid again. I didn’t need to push him away, because he was determined to stay.

© Sarah Doughty
2018

Sometimes all anyone needs
is a little reassurance.

Poetry

Implosions

“I would sacrifice everything to see
your smile every minute
for the rest of my life.”

The moment our eyes met, I was lost. The colors in your eyes felt like swimming in a Technicolor kaleidoscope. It was a flood of glittering, sunlit seas in the mid-winter Atlantic. It was spellbinding. And I never wanted to look away. But when I saw that smile spread across your lips, it felt like my world imploded. I would sacrifice everything to see that smile every minute for the rest of our lives.

© Sarah Doughty
2018

It would be worth it
to stay lost at sea forever.

Poetry

Stolen And Kept

“In those few seconds, I realized
she had already stolen my heart.”

It was the way she looked at the moon that caught my attention. How she took her time, assessing every crevasse, every blemish that marked that silvery face. All the while, I couldn’t resist doing the same for her. I wondered where she got that scar over her eyebrow, why she tried to hide her dimples, and why her lip curled just a little as she concentrated. Those few seconds were all it took for me to realize that she had already stolen my heart.

© Sarah Doughty
2018

I wished one wish that night.
That she would keep my heart safe.

Poetry

Sleepy Smiles

“In his arms, I was safe.
I couldn’t help but smile
as sleep took me away.”

A small smile crept across his lips and he motioned me to move toward him. I snuggled against his side and his arms wrapped around me, which only made me melt further into him. With my ear just above his heart, I heard that beating within his chest like it was a melody I’d heard since infancy. It was comforting. Safe. I felt the warmth of his breath hitting the top of my head just before a low whisper passed his lips, “This is home.” I couldn’t help but smile as sleep took me away.

© Sarah Doughty
2018

This is home for me too.
Have a wonderful Valentine’s Day.

Poetry

You Were There

“What mattered was that I needed you.
And you were there.”

It feels like you’re miles away, yet you’re right next to me. Skin to skin. I can feel your warmth as you hold me together with the strength of your arms. And I wonder if you know how much I needed your strength tonight. I wonder if you know just how much I was crumbling. You didn’t need to ask, because, to you, it didn’t matter. What mattered was that I needed you. And you were there.

© Sarah Doughty
2018

You were there to hold me together.

Poetry

The Reason

“For better or worse, I am me.
Because I refused to let you
be the reason I would fail.”

I am the reason, you said. The result of what’s left after the darkness fulfilled your needs. After this wolf sunk his teeth into his meal, I am the resulting creature. I have to remind myself that this isn’t a dream I can wake from. That the predator prowling in the dark is everywhere. In the very air I breathe. The frayed carped beneath my bare skin. It’s not something I can escape. And that aftertaste that lingers on my tongue is just an echo of what you savored like it was your last meal. It’s just another reminder of how far you’d go to get your fill.

I am the reason for you. Forever your prey. Always at your mercy.

© Sarah Doughty

I am the reason
the me I am today exists at all.
Because I refused to let you be
the reason I would fail.

Poetry

Wrong

“When you ask me what’s wrong,
I don’t know how to answer.”

When you ask me what’s wrong, I honestly don’t know how to answer. I can feel that I’m slipping over the edge of an endless abyss. But I don’t know what awaits at the bottom. I don’t know if it’s just one of those chasms that makes everything disappear, or if it’s going to be something good. Like light. Or hope. Or, maybe, it’s just a means of breaking me down into my last remaining pieces, each one no bigger than a grain of sand. And here, at this edge, time seems to drag on as I try to hold on. I want to keep trying, but something is going to give and I know it’s only a matter of time before I sink.

© Sarah Doughty
2018

How can I tell you what’s wrong,
when I don’t even know?

When I wrote this, I was reminded
of Bing Bong from Inside Out. That strange
cotton candy/raccoon/dolphin/elephant hybrid
that was Riley’s imaginary friend in her early years.
The Memory Dump, where old memories go to die,
was where Bing Bong selflessly and happily met his end.

Take her to the moon for me, okay?

Poetry

Carvings

“My heart was laid bare
and your name was carved
into its walls.”

The silver blade flashed against the moonlight and though I couldn’t be sure, I thought I heard it sing as it sliced through the air. It was as if the silver were alive. And it danced to some melody only it could hear. When it connected to raw flesh, it cut with precision down to the bone in one clean swipe, leaving behind a searing, white hot pain that wouldn’t let go. That’s what it felt like when I first laid my eyes upon you. It was as if your soul cut through every defense I had like it was nothing. In an instant, my heart was laid bare and your name was carved into its walls.

© Sarah Doughty

Somehow being so vulnerable made me feel free.
It was exhilarating.