Poetry, PTSD and Awareness, Uncategorized, Updates

Testify! – A Collaboration

A piece of grave importance that is very relevant and needed in today’s society. Please take a few minutes to give this one a read.

Blood Into Ink

Testify

Elephants in the arena,
drowning out the stories as
we all hear them,
stomping on
the flowerbed scenery
they’ve built around your garden of rot,
and without a
second thought,
sold the world a
wilting centerpiece
(Nicholas Gagnier)

I
And His Daughter Prayed for Her
She didn’t really know why
She prayed she’d not meet a guy
At a party; ‘cause he’d liked beer
That sudsy stuff she’d now fear

II

The louder we toast
The better the truth we spew
Just another pint
The truth becomes toxic stew
We’ll all agree
Got the votes of the old crew
Now let’s all meet
At Four P’s and grab a brew
(Stephen Fuller)

Oh! look at him
when the venom drips from his slithering tongue
and he moans and screams
to validate his flagrant lies
and the white privilege
agrees in complete unison

Hiding behind the female prosecutor

View original post 697 more words

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Poetry, PTSD and Awareness, Updates

Asking For It

“Before you point that accusatory finger
in my direction, remember this:
I never asked for it.”

The sun is setting and I feel the cold seeping into my bones. I feel the life bleeding out of my feet, leeching into the ground. And I stand here, breathing smoke into the sky. Because that’s all I have left to give — pieces of my broken spirit. And that’s all that remains after the vultures picked me apart. So before you point that accusatory finger in my direction, remember this: I never asked for it. I never gave the wrong signals. I didn’t deserve all you forced upon me.

And how could I have known better? I was barely old enough to walk, let alone understand what vile things you wanted from me. If you wouldn’t blame a child, then why blame the teenager for going to a party? Why blame the woman that was followed home from work? It’s time everyone takes a hard look at the patterns. Those men saw something they wanted, and they took it. With complete disregard for their victim. And I suppose that’s part of the point. They have the power. They need it. So they take it wherever they can get it.

So, if you are a victim, and you’ve ever felt that finger pointing in your direction, know that no matter what anyone tells you — You. Are. Not. To. Blame.

© Sarah Doughty

Illustration via @harumi_hironaka.

I am sharing this again today, not because I feel the need to repost it, but because I feel it’s necessary to reiterate to the world that there is, in fact, a culture. It exists and there is a reason that women (for the majority) do not come forward until sometimes decades later, if at all. Society immediately rejects them.

She shouldn’t have been at that party.
She shouldn’t have been wearing those clothes.
She shouldn’t have given him 
eyes….
Where’s the evidence to prove this happened?
Why didn’t she come forward immediately?
… and the list goes on.

So, this is for all the survivors out there — both the ones that have used their voices (and especially for Dr. Ford, for having the bravery to speak out in a public, televised inquiry, despite having been harassed and given multiple death threats by even considering doing so) and those that have survived in silence — know that it was not your fault. My thoughts are always with the people that have suffered at the hands of monsters and I hope that at the very least, someone will find comfort with these words. Just knowing that you aren’t alone might be enough.


I also want to state that I am not claiming that Kavanaugh is guilty, because I believe in the “innocent until proven guilty” principles this country is based upon. However, this does not mean that I believe that Dr. Ford is not telling her truth. Something happened to her, and I believe her. After thirty-some years, you wouldn’t remember something in such vivid detail if it wasn’t a major event in your life. I know this from experience. There are many things I wish I could erase from my mind, but alas, they are burned there like a brand and they will never go away as long as I live. These are not the accounts and emotional responses of a person that is fabricating a story.

Random Thoughts, Updates

Saving Her

A few days ago, I wrote about something very important to me. How she’s helped me over the years. I thought it was fitting to share actual photos and a little history about her. To celebrate her life, as she was then, and how she is now. Before it ends.

Lovelies, meet Pumpkin.

This was taken shortly after she was rescued, and she’d put on the much-needed thirty pounds of weight. Looking back, I can almost see the gratitude in her eyes for giving her a new chance at life. From the first day, she was always by my side….

And from the first moment she met this little boy several years later, she was smitten. Anytime he cried, she was there to soothe him. Her favorite moments were the ones like these….

Ever since, she has taken care of him, just as she has done for me. My family has been lucky to have her in our lives for over twelve years. The only problem is that we don’t know how much time is left. I see the clouds in her eyes and how stiff she feels when the weather changes or the temperatures are too cool. But, despite all that, she never stops taking care of us.

Every day, she leaves me
with this question:
Who saved whom?

© Sarah Doughty

Poetry, Updates

Sharp

“When I awoke from the nightmare,
I reminded myself that I was alive.”

The blade cut into the night and flashed silver against the moonlight. And even though my ears heard no sounds but the thundering of my heart, I swore I could hear the sharp metal singing its high-pitched tune as it sliced through the air. It slipped through my skin like it was warm butter and at first I felt nothing. I wondered if maybe it was shock or disbelief. But then the pain started. Like someone injected gasoline into my bloodstream and lit a match. I watched as the thick, red liquid poured out of the fresh wound and begged for death. And as he stood over me, he licked my blood from his dagger and smiled down at me in a show of blood-stained teeth — right before everything went black.

When I awoke from the nightmare, I reminded myself that I was alive and the true face behind my fears liked it when I called him Daddy. The only comfort I found was knowing that death came for him first. Too bad he didn’t take the memories with him.

© Sarah Doughty

This was written as part of
a much larger collaboration called Sharp
with Sudden Denouement‘s Weyward Sisters,
nine other extremely talented writers.
As always, it was a pleasure writing with them.

Poetry, Updates

Reconciliation

“My love, all I want and need is you.
It’s always been you.”

Maybe that’s what I can’t reconcile. What I want and what I need. You. You see, I want you to be by my side. I want you to love me, unequivocally, just as I love you. I want you to grow old with me, and fall more in love with me every day as I do for you. I want you with me, happy, content, and fulfilled. What I want is you. All of you. For always….

© Sarah Doughty

Read the rest of this piece
at Sudden Denouement.
As always, many thanks
to the wonderful people
there for all their kindness
and support.

Poetry, Updates

Only One of Us Gets to be a Martyr

It was the defiance in your gaze that caught my eye at first. The way you did the opposite of what anyone told you, for the sake of proving them wrong. Sometimes you succeeded, and sometimes you didn’t. But it never stopped you from being you. Down to the core. Making your own way, on your own terms. Maybe that was what fascinated me for so long. What left me in awe. Maybe it was some of the things you said. What left me speechless.

(But I’m restless,
full of
condescension,
ruling my own city without mandate or
consensus, putting up
fences, making
contestants of
first
impressions,
taking something so breakable as penance
and helping it
be bent
in pieces.)

Read the rest here.

© Sarah Doughty and Nicholas Gagnier

I had the distinct pleasure
of collaborating with the amazing
and talented Nicholas Gagnier
to celebrate the second anniversary
of Sudden Denouement.
This is just an excerpt of the entire piece.
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Updates

Now Available: Nicole Lyons’ Blossom and Bone

Sudden Denouement Publishing is thrilled to announce
that Nicole Lyons stunning third book of poetry,
Blossom and Bone, has been officially released.

Praise for Blossom and Bone:

“A beautifully crafted work of art that will punch you in the
face with its gritty realism before soothing your wounds with
elegant prose, thought provoking lines, and sublime imagery.”
– Samuel Decker Thompson, author of Our Fucked Up Hearts

“Lyons is connecting on a primal level here, all the while brilliantly
splitting herself along dual lines. She draws an effortless
parallel between desire to live and acceptance she cannot beat
death.”
– Nicholas Gagnier, author of Leonard The Liar

Read more of the amazing early reviews here.

Get your copy here.

Congrats, Nicole! I’m so happy for you.
~Sarah

Poetry, Updates

Two Parts – A Sudden Denouement Collaboration

She was a breath of fresh air
He grew up in the tenements
She was a mountain range
He was that sweet something
After too much saltiness
She grew up listening to country
He was her first taste of jazz

She was his first night under the stars. His first taste of the wild. She was the reprieve he needed from the concrete and smog. He brought her excitement and city lights, but still danced with her under the moonlight. He showed her that there was more to her world, just as she did for him. At last, they felt like two parts made whole….

Stanza 1 © Erich Michaels
Stanza 2 © Sarah Doughty
Read the rest here.

This is just a small excerpt of a collaboration
with the talented Erich Michaels,
published at Sudden Denouement Literary Collective
to celebrate its second anniversary!

Poetry, Updates

Penance – A Sudden Denouement Collaboration

I said I’d be your wings,
so you hired a flat-felled seamstress
who
topstitched me to your back.

Save me, you say
when jumping off bridges.

And this is my penance,
hoping you would thrive —
not take risks with your life.

But yet, there you are,
jumping with blind faith…

Stanzas 1&2 © Kindra M. Austin
Stanzas 3&4 © Sarah Doughty
Read the rest here.

This is just a small excerpt of a collaboration
with the badass Kindra M. Austin of Poems And Paragraphs,
published at Sudden Denouement Literary Collective
to celebrate its second anniversary!

Poetry, Updates

Bereft – A Sudden Denouement Collaboration

I’m parched
A pariah
Desolate
Dehydrated by lack
Of human touch

No matter how surrounded I am by all the warm bodies, I’m bereft. Longing to be held. To be seen. To be touched. By you. But, here I stand, desperate for a drink of contact with no drop in sight….

Stanza 1 © Laurie Wise
Stanza 2 © Sarah Doughty
Read the rest here.

This is just a small excerpt of a collaboration
with the lovely Laurie Wise of 1WiseWoman,
published at Sudden Denouement Literary Collective
to celebrate its second anniversary!