“Sometimes, I find myself
listening to sad songs because
all I really want to do is cry.”

Sometimes, I find myself listening to sad songs because all I really want to do is cry. Not just let some tears slip from my eyes. But sob. Let it all out like the world is coming to an end. And sometimes I do. I just can’t hold back any longer, even though I try to resist it.

But when I’m left needing more than a few songs and a few tears, that’s when I know I’m in a dark place. Over time, though, I’ve learned that taking off the mask and letting the sobs wrack through my body is what causes the cracks in my skin to show. Through those cracks, there’s light. So maybe, after all, it’s not so bad to let myself feel what I need to feel. Because then I can let the light back in.

© Sarah Doughty

And we all could use
a little light now and again.


Weighing Heavy

“This darkness weighs heavy on my sleepy eyes,
but it lets me hide from the truth.”

This darkness weighs heavy on my sleepy eyes and I don’t know what I can do to let some light in. I’m not even sure I want to any longer. It seems the more I linger in these suffocating shadows, the more I appreciate them for what they are. You see, in the light, you can see the sadness in my weary expression. In the light, it becomes impossible to hide from the truth that shadows can conceal with ease. So this perpetual night isn’t so much a tomb. It’s a mask.

© Sarah Doughty

And I’m okay hiding in shadow for now.


Dreamless Questions

“Darling, do you even know
what you’ve missed because of me?
Would you still want to stay?”

Have you ever wondered what my dreams are like? What you would see if you looked behind the mask on my face? Would you see colors? Light? Hear sounds? Have you ever wondered about the faces I’ve glimpsed? The conversations I’ve had? The ones where I’m just a spectator, or seeing through the eyes of someone unknown? Would you even want to see, if you knew the kinds of things that lurked in the shadows? What about the times the beauty of my dreams brings me to tears and I cry through closed eyes? Or when the beauty and tragedy of my world falls from the sky like a waterfall? Would you want to see the ones I have with you in them? The ones that exist in a world where I am not hiding behind a mask, because I don’t need to? Would you want to see what you’ve missed? What you could have had with someone else?

Would you still see me as the same person?

© Sarah Doughty

Would you still want to stay?


So Very Lucky

“Despite everything, my love,
I was lucky enough to find you.”

I watched a young girl grow into a strong, intelligent woman over the years. She knew her heart and her future. And she wasn’t afraid to chase her dreams. I’m happy she had all those things I never did.

But it also made me realize, even though I missed out on so much growing up, I married a guy that has stood by his vows through all these years. I married into a family that has never once treated me as anything less than perfect.

© Sarah Doughty

I survived hell,
and then I became
a fucking Doughty.


You Are My Everything

“Darling, don’t ever think I wouldn’t do
anything I could to save you.”

Darling, don’t ever think I wouldn’t do anything I could to save you. Because you are everything to me. The breath in my lungs. The blood in my veins. The thoughts in my head. You are what keep me, me. You are worth it.

You deserve to survive and be respected.

You, my body, have taken such great care of me.

© Sarah Doughty

You protected me
when I needed you.
Now I need to forgive you
for doing the only thing
you could: survive.


Never Goodbye

“And I want you to know: I need you.
Until the end of time, I refuse to say goodbye.”

No matter where you are, I’ll find you, if you need me. If you’re lost and need someone to guide you home, I’ll be your compass. And I want you to know one thing, no matter how close or far away you are from me: I need you. Because you are my soulmate.

No matter what it takes, hold on. Take care of yourself. Stay alive. Because I don’t know what I’d do without you. And if you leave this world, I would make it my mission to find your ghost. I would find your spirit in the afterlife. I would find you in the next life.

No matter what happens, I won’t accept that it’s over. We will never be over. Until the end of time, I refuse to say goodbye.

© Sarah Doughty

Wherever you go, I’ll be with you.


Savoring You

“I felt the burn of your touch.
And I needed you like air in my lungs.”

I felt the burn of your touch, like your skin was molten, searing me like a brand. And I wanted you to touch me everywhere. Because I needed it — needed you like I needed air in my lungs.

The carnal fury in your gaze was just as hot. The flames dancing in your irises. The predatory look as your eyes dragged up and down over me. It was like you could see right through me and knew exactly what I needed from you. And that small smile — that devilish grin on your face told me you’d take your time making sure you’d do each and every one of those things.

In those moments, I wanted to savor every moment. I wanted to take my time getting to know the way your skin felt under my fingertips. The intoxicating taste of your mouth, I wanted to get drunk on them.

I didn’t mind if I’d be reduced to ash by the time you were finished, because being with you in those moments was worth it.

© Sarah Doughty

And oh, it was worth it.


The War Inside

“I tell myself it is not
my fault for surviving.”

I feel these chains wrapped around me, holding me hostage. And this anger — this hatred — this guilt — that has bottled up within me is boiling towards the surface as I remain motionless. The fury overcomes me and it begins to eat me alive. I have no choice to but let it out before it consumes me. My heartbeats pick up in tempo, like they’re building toward some epic ending of a drum beat. I feel the rush of my blood in my veins begin to boil as a battle cry echoes across my mind.

But on the outside, I look normal. There are no chains, there is no expression on my face. If anything, I look blank, like no one is home behind my eyes. A vacancy in a body being defiled. The only sign I’m still alive is the uptick of my breathing. Yet as I endure you without moving, my insides are waging a war. Screaming at me to do something. Anything. As the moments go by, nothing happens. And for a few blissful moments, I feel like I’m floating above my body, and all I feel is emptiness. Afterward, when it’s all over, I tell myself it is not my fault for surviving.

This is what it’s like to be trapped in a body that cannot defend itself.

© Sarah Doughty

This is what it’s like to freeze
in the face of danger.
To dissociate.
These are learned behaviors.
I know it all too well.
And far too many people have experienced it.

If nothing else, hold on to this:
it is not your fault
for how your body responds.
It is an instinctual defense mechanism for a reason.
Don’t let your guilt and self-hatred consume you.
Don’t blame yourself for surviving.



“I’ve lived through hell before.
But here I am, living in another one.”

I’ve always known this world
is a cruel one.
Living through hell
will give anyone
some perspective.
But I never imaged this
would be our reality —
a hell. A distorted place
where nothing makes sense.
Where monsters
hide in plain sight,
barely attempting
to disguise themselves.

A world where I’m terrified
every day I send
my son to school.
One where I fear
for my neighbors.
A reality where children
are living in cages.
Where fundamental
human rights is becoming
more exclusive by the day.
Where hatred is very much
alive and well.
The worst part?
I’ve lived through hell before.
But here I am,
living in another one.

© Sarah Doughty

Give me something to celebrate,
because I honestly don’t have one.

 It’s quite unfortunate to note that the state of things haven’t really improved much. Today, this pandemic is more at the forefront of everyone’s minds, but the distrust, misinformation, and outright hatred are still very much alive.

Poetry, Random Thoughts, Updates

The State Of Things

“Here’s the thing: I’m not okay.
I haven’t been for some time.”

Here’s the thing: I’m not okay. I haven’t been for some time. And it seems that it’s only been getting worse as the days go by. I am at a loss for what I should do. Let me restate that. I know what I should be doing, but I cannot seem to force myself to do it. Instead, I’m seeking reprieve from life in something I never thought I’d enjoy instead of writing out my thoughts and really doing the thing that has always helped me — write. Yet here I am. Not writing. Well, I’m writing this little update, it’s been years since I’ve written fiction with any substantial amount of time. And I honestly don’t know if or when I’ll be able to snap out of this funk and just do it.

So that’s where I am. Don’t give up on me yet. I haven’t admitted defeat.

© Sarah Doughty

I don’t think I ever will.