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Author: Danielle B.

See, these days I occupy my minutes

with, the uniquely rich cancer sticks,

to make THAT part of me die –

over and over like a blister in the sun.


You see, I am stuck


the lines that haunt me,

the way that anger and pride kindle the hurt

the ebb and flow of wasting time,

of rising anxiety – which is automatically lingering these days.

People once told me that, that, it’s good, “it’s good to be seen”.

Behind these walls — this is why I hate to cry –


because, I’ve been told to let go, to compromise.

I’ve learned how to calm the ego, down

to taste freedom, but ATTACK – the silence surrounds me.

I just might, push the breakdown

In terms, like lines, and boundaries –

How can I describe … the darkness, the isolation, and the self-loathing?

Like a breathless papercut,

Let me lick these wounds into ashes, but …

Wounds into conversations, and inflections –

Healing has this way where moving forwards becomes a place,

where dialogue shapeshifts into the kind of happiness that still chooses to wear a mask.

Hope moves like legs and fingers that try to find others like themselves …

Intertwining like subversion, like hollowed voices beckoning darkness.

And Time, it wraps around old thoughts slowly,

the way a cigarette burns down




The pain and trauma

from the past,

from today

from tomorrow —

like smoke signals, cylinders of stories

which construct, and influx, the way my mind clauses –

complicated little niches – :: INHALE ::

Deep, just so I can collapse these mother fucking lungs of feeling.

Because my mind is a crowded space

These questions, like fears, little disarmed monsters –

This is why I choose to light up these contexts, to keep old demons down

with sand and grit, smoke like a chain between the filter and me,




I make room for the healing. But, don’t worry about me.

This is why I choose

to let these cinders burn.

— Sometimes, I miss the girl who used to stand

in the dark corners

of bars

of alleys

who was waiting to die

every night.

Sometimes, I miss the

black and blues

the cuts and scars.

The storefronts

The light poles

The burning smell of rubber

and red and white and blue lights.

I can still feel the cold concrete

floor of Central Bookings beneath my fingertips.

She at least, knew herself.

I, still haven’t found

what I’m looking for.

Author: Danielle B. See, these days I occupy

Author: Kristen C.

When her father was drunk, he’d say ‘I used to have a brother, you know’,
He got faraway look in his eyes, a memory forming in the clouds,
His hands would open and close, tightening as his breath grew swallow,
Cruel thoughts manifesting at the bottom of his scotch,
But he’d smile again a minute later and the memory was gone,
Along with the uncle she wish she never knew she had.
When her mother was drunk, she would stumble and fall,
Tripping over more than her words, but,
Her smile was never as bright as when she was half way through the bottle of wine,
And her eyes held a shine that would never see the light of day,
But morning would always come, and with it the shameful dissonance.
Her mother always hides the bruises and broken glasses well.
She had never known the effects of the drink until later in her life,
For she had seen what could happen when a pain that deep ran in the family,
But she has come to understand the appeal of a drunken stupor,
Reality always made much more sense when her world was spinning.
When she drinks, she drinks to remember, to forget
It depends on the night in question,
Sometimes it’s to remember her mothers smile, or forget the haunted look in her eyes in the morning rays,
Or she drinks to forget the secrets she wished her father never spilled,
Drinks to forget the reality she helped create.
She knows the harmful effects of addiction to the bottle,
But she knows she cannot function without it; family traits and all,
Yet there is power every time she spills the bottle down the sink,
But she clings to the drops as though they hold a dying prayer,
She hates living on a silent scream, but she still she prays
Asking those above to save her from the same path as those before her.

Author: Kristen C. When her father was drunk,

Author: Allyson

It’s the nature of the beast
That turns lions into cowards
Relationships soured
They say
Just take it day by day
Hour by hour

But what happens when your demons get the best of you?
Have you wishing
That you knew
What you know now
Back then…
Oh, to be 17 again

As time goes on I find myself wiser
But at what cost?
Wisdom doesn’t mean we fail to be lost
Day by Day
Hour by hour
Death creeps closer,
We relinquish our power

The Reaper towers
Casting a shadow so dark..
That it’s loud
All we wanted was for them to be proud
But that’s the nature of the beast
Always looking for his next feast

Countless lives and voices unspoken
Leaving behind the pieces
Jagged, so broken

One by one
Hour by hour
Aching hearts
Surrender their souls
As their prison turns cold

Screaming now
Will there ever be a way out?

Just take it day by day
Or hour by hour
But only with help
Perhaps a higher power

If you find yourself battling the same demons as me and my friends,
Don’t ever forget how precious life is.

Author: Allyson It’s the nature of the beast That

By Allyson C.

10 years
It took me to realize
I am my own demise

10 days
I’ve been lying here
In misery
Cold, hot, weak, jittery
Nausea, Dizzy
When will it ever end?

10 seconds pass
An eternity

10 days in Hell
Such a small price to pay
After a decade of having things my way
I cheated, I lied, lost so many
I cried
The lies the lies the lies
It was worth it, right?
To feel nothing
To feel everything
To feel…

10 hours later
My mind slightly clearer
Finding peace knowing
I am only growing
Forgive the lies
Forgive the pain

But never forget
The poison in your veins
Is truly what drove you insane
Caused all the pain
It’s finally time to

10 years
I am strong
I am ready

To embrace the hands
That hold me steady
Never forgetting
The gift of desperation

By Allyson C. 10 years It took me to

You were the only one there
when no one was.
You were the only thing to take away the pain.
You numbed me.
You made me not have to feel the hurt I felt each day.
But then you numbed me, to the point where you were the only thing that could help me cope.
You to my mind, life, family, friends.
You took more then my hurt.
You took all of me and more.
Now I sit and of all the things I missed, wasted time because of you.
Now you are gone, I’m taking my life back.
You will no longer control me.
This is my LAST goodbye.
I’m in control now.

You were the only one there when no