Poetry

Unbroken

“I knew empathy. Right and wrong.
And I knew I wasn’t broken after all.”

I always wondered what it would feel like if I would survive the hell I knew as a child. I wondered if I’d know the true meaning of love. If I’d be the kind of person to become a parent. But not just any parent. One that would truly care and love that human being with every fiber of my being. I wondered how much of me was actually inhereted from the man that dedicated so much time hurting me when I was young. But I made a vow to become nothing like him. That I would overcome him and be everything he never could be. And despite the fact that he fooled so many people, I came out the other side intact. I came out with a strong sense of empathy. Of right and wrong. That was when I knew he didn’t break me after all.

© Sarah Doughty

I was too strong for that.

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Poetry

Monsters And Survivors

“And you know what?
I deserve to be treated like I matter.
Because I do.”

Maybe it’s naïvety to trust someone who should be a friend. Maybe it’s just the good parts of me hoping that there is good in others. That maybe, I am not a means to an end. Something to be used, rather than cherished for who I am. But, I think that’s what sets me apart from those who take advantage of others. I lived through hell. And rather than spreading my pain around, I choose to be light. Good. I choose to rise above and beyond better. And you know what? I deserve to be treated like I matter. Because I do.

© Sarah Doughty

No one deserves to be used,
bullied, or otherwise hurt.

Monsters and survivors
are mutually exclusive.

I survived hell.
I can certainly survive you.

Poetry

Changing

“You are everything to me.
So, please tell me you’re here to stay.”

When I found you, my world began to change. You gave me the means to find my voice after a lifetime’s worth of silence. And I found that my heart and soul could at last sing out into the world without feeling as though it was only a vast emptiness that listened. You are everything to me. So, please, tell me you’re here to stay.

© Sarah Doughty

Thank you
for everything
you’ve given me.

Poetry

In The Breaking

“Don’t push me away thinking
I’ll break by loving you.
Because I won’t.”

It’s in the skipping of the beats of my heart. The trembling of uncertainty in my fingers. The itch in my lips with the urge to lean toward you. It’s in the slow, steady steps I take in your direction with my eyes locked with yours. It’s in the way I cautiously yet confidently move toward you. Like prey without fear, standing in challenge to the one with those dangerous eyes. But there’s no fear. There’s never been any fear. So don’t push me away thinking I’ll break by loving you. Because I won’t.

© Sarah Doughty

I won’t break.

Poetry

Apocalyptic

“You’re more than a person I grieve.
My world ended the moment you left it.”

But this ache of mine, growing deeper in my chest, feels more like a chasm than just a space waiting to be filled again. It whispers during the night, directing my dreams to the past and what I imagined the future would look like. It vibrates during the day, as if my heart is no longer sustaining me, but this vast emptiness and its slow, steady expansion through my body. You see, it’s a constant reminder that we only existed in the past. This present is a painful reality I’ve yet to accept. A future that can no longer exist. And it’s eating away at me, day by day. This missing of you. The loss of everything that could have been. Because it’s more than just a person I grieve. My whole world ended the moment you left it.

© Sarah Doughty

I don’t know
how to rewrite
the rest of the story
without you.

Poetry

Falling Down

“And this is when I crumble.
Knowing that my heart wants only you.”

And this is when I crumble. When the fear takes over and my heart overpowers my mind. It’s the knowing that my heart wants only you. The trembling of my foundation becomes too much to remain on my unsteady feet and I begin to sway. As the pieces fall beneath me, forcing me to balance, knowing that it’s only a matter of time before I fall, I try to prepare myself. But I’m never ready to fall apart. I’m never ready to be vulnerable. To be seen. Raw. Flawed. And scared. Always scared. But I know, eventually I will land on solid ground and then, maybe then, it won’t drop out from under me.

© Sarah Doughty

So please, tell me you’ve got me,
because I don’t want
to fall away from you.

Poetry

Alight

“I always loved the way your blue eyes
lit up when you looked at me.”

In the pre-dawn light, I feel the warmth of the day seeping into my bones. It reminded me of the way your eyes lit up. How the brilliant blue sometimes refracted little bits of orange when you smiled in my direction. It reminded me of the way your hand entwined with mine felt warm and safe. Never uncomfortable. But then sun inevitably creeps over the horizon, searing my eyes and burning my flesh, making me beg for night to return again. If only to look up at the stars and remember the depth I saw in your gaze when your eyes locked with mine.

© Sarah Doughty

If only to see
your eyes again.

Poetry

Pieces Of Safety

“If I knew what life would bring you,
I would have tried to keep you safe.”

If I knew the things that troubled you late into the night, I would’ve made more than just a simple dream catcher. I would’ve showed you how to face your fears. How to do the impossible, and act instead of stay frozen in indecision. If I knew the life you would lead and all the pain that would come with it, I would’ve tried to keep your innocence just a little longer. If only I knew what I know now, maybe, just maybe, you would have come out the other side intact.

© Sarah Doughty

But now,
I’m in just as many
pieces as you.

Poetry

Echoes And Beats

“Can you hear the echo in my heart?
It remembers everything we were.”

Can you hear the echo in my heart? The one that reverberates instead of a beat, continuing to move blood through my veins. Can you sense the silhouette — the shadows behind me that linger with sadness and pain? It’s the ghost of what used to be you and me. Everything we ever were. And what could have been. The joy I felt when our hearts beat in unison. The bright outlook of the future we were meant to share. Now all that remains of us is a memory. Still full of love, but yet broken at the same time.

© Sarah Doughty

I wonder,
does your heart
echo too?

Poetry

Cold Hearts

“Sometimes cold hearts can beat
when they prey on something warm.”

And it feels like a part of my heart was ripped out of my chest for no reason other than to see how much it would hurt. I suppose that’s what you have to be prepared for when you bare your soul to the world — not everyone will be there to offer you a safe place to rest when you are weary. Not everyone will give you shelter from the rain. And not everyone will offer you a blanket when you are cold. Because sometimes cold hearts can only keep beating when they prey on something warm.

© Sarah Doughty

And you took your fill.