Breaking My Own Heart

Stephanie Bennett-Henry shows how breaking one’s own heart seems to make a kind of sense.

Stephanie Bennett-Henry

The things I need don’t exist in reality, so I dream during the day to prepare for the chill of the night. I sleepwalk under the sunlight and make my way to places where moments can be touched and god, I hold them so close to my heart hoping they reach out to hold me too. They never do. They never do. But I keep walking, because I never learned how to not chase dreams. I latch on to beautiful things until they rub against me just enough to make me feel butterflies or goosebumps or like maybe somehow I matter. I let that feeling swirl around as long as it wants to stay, and then I watch it fly away. The beautiful things…they always leave. I keep pieces of them here in memory of that time when I couldn’t stop smiling. But I hold those memories like a loss…

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Of Hens and Cockerels

On The Whisper And The Roar, Karem Barratt brings a parable of fowls.

Whisper and the Roar


There was cognac and cigars;

Black ties and snowy handkerchiefs peaking

Shyly over the puffed chests of

The mighty cockerels singing their

Dominion over the hen henhouse,

The sun, the sky, the seasons,

The world, the stars.

And after the pleasantries and the

Polite laughter, there came the pecks.

But it was okay.

We, the hens, had to put aside all

The pc sillines, because money

Was being auctioned to save children

And donkeys and probably some grannies

From terrible, sad loneliness.

This was our sacrifice.

Except that we didn’t sign for it.

Nor did we sign for the looks, the hands,

The touches, the slimy words that

Felt like vomit. It was scary at times

And mostly down right ugly, but it’s okay

If it’s for charity, apparently.

And the cockerels sang harder

And flapped their wings,

As, we, the hens, became snakes,

Slithering away, to the right,


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Scorched Earth

Christine Ray scorches the page, if not (perhaps) the earth.

Brave and Reckless

Strong emotion of any kind

was not viewed favorably when I was growing up

My mother

my grandmother

my aunts

my uncles

my cousins

my teachers

the parish priest

made clear to me

that I was

Too opinionated

Too smart

Too stubborn

Too questioning

Too challenging

Too sarcastic

I would always sigh and think to myself

Too me

I was told not to be angry

about this

or that

or the other thing

The list of things that it was acceptable to be angry about

was a very short  list

My whole childhood I was taught

that my anger

my rage

was a fearsome thing

that must be contained at all times

When it erupted

with teeth

and fire

in my adolescence

I was reminded again that it was to be subdued

wrestled back into its cage

kept under strict lock and key

I couldn’t quite decide if they thought I…

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Without Shields (the voice of change is changing)

Nora Bateson – “I am walking barefoot through the glass of broken worlds.”



There are ancestries and ecologies that are speaking. I am honored when their voices run through me. Only when my integrity is clean is the frequency audible. Simplicity is complexity with grace.
To be their vessel: to hold the nourishment, to wear the breath of any possible future…is to cast aside the costumes and scripts of excuses for the damage. The exploitation that has been justified has bled through now. The language, the status and the authority once wielded to make the vulnerable quiver, now makes cuckolds of anyone who would stand in for the way things have been. Time’s up.
So I stand naked, in the fire, alone in the dark night. Warrior-ready to simply disavow the matrix of materialism. Eyes rolling in disbelief. Once again the presumption… the nerve is remarkable. Taking, tricking, claiming is the perverse providence of…

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Nora Bateson offers a poem.



Slicing open the screen,
Possibility drenches in
colors sluice through the gap

A bubble of my own making,

and instead of climbing through
I mend the portal,
And I am again contained
Safely steeping in this familiar trap

Here reason is tethered to abstractions.
While life plays on the other side

My skin too
keeps bones from sight.
And it is so easy
to forget everything alive.

-n.bateson 2018

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The Trouble With Hearts

Nicole – A heart that has “has loved too
hard to burn.”

The Lithium Chronicles

This evening I woke
to the sound of Spring
banging her fists,
full of blossoms,
against my front door,
and I wondered how
long it has been
since you smelled
anything other than deep
earth and the absence
of rotting love.
I still wake up,
strung out and smelling
you on my skin,
thinking the dead
should always be left
with their hearts.
Pin mine to my
dress and leave me
to rot, it has loved too
hard to burn.

© Nicole Lyons 2018

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Unclaimed Baggage

Stephanie Bennett-Henry – Baggage and crumpled notes

Stephanie Bennett-Henry

It’s not your fault,

It’s me.

Always me

who sabotages my old wounds

to make them new again

so I can call it a bandage

when it’s nothing more

than a scapegoat.

My shoulders are too heavy

to take on more blame.

I am weighed down already

with regret

that eats away at my flesh

and there’s no room

for all the resentment

built into my bones.

My bags have been packed

for so long.

It’s the baggage inside,

I never learned how to put it down.

I never learned how to walk without it.

Call it a crutch if you will,

A drug I can’t stop taking.

So I fill my veins with self doubt

until I’m collapsed

and bleeding out

in the reflection of my own flaws

and I soak in the comfort

of knowing that’s where I’m safe.

Treading inside the self image

and it’s so fucking…

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BULLY OFF! #AUTISM by Sonia Boue

Hasty presents a new guest.


Sonia is my first guest on Hastywords in quite awhile.  Please give her a warm welcome and help her share her story.  


I’ve recently been a target of an attempt at bullying. I didn’t think this could happen to me, so I’m writing because I want to help others feel safer and stronger. I found my experience shocking as it is many, many years since I felt such visceral fear, though with the right support I saw it for what it was – a vindictive sham. Momentarily, it had taken me back to when I was 11 years old and cornered in an underpass outside my school, outnumbered by a gang of girls primed to beat me up. I feel the most constructive way to deal with this is to speak out and share my thoughts on effective autistic self protection.
I’ve known social disdain of a subtle kind…

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Hasty means it when she says it.


spring-2298279_960_720 PIXABAY

“I love you”

Not just words


Thrown together

But seeds

I plant to grow

Every time

I mouth them

They fall

And bloom

And multiply

Like a garden

Of flowers

Ready to use

To give away

As easily

And beautifully

As I give my smile

So when I say

“I love you”

It means

You specifically

Just made

My soul smile


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Christine Ray – Got Baggage?

Brave and Reckless

She had accumulated a certain

amount of “baggage”

she was forced to

take with her

where ever she went

It would be



to leave it behind

make the care, keeping

of her personal baggage

someone else’s responsibility

She pictured her baggage as

brightly colored balls

floating in a swimming pool






She avoided touching the

black balls with her

bare skin

they had a tendency

to snarl


draw blood

crunch bone

Neat, tidy labels identified them

recurrent nightmares






unrequited love


The list went on

there was a white ball

for each of her dead

She did not like to

count the white balls

It made her too sad

She discovered that

it was hard to go about

her day to day business

with these balls

pushing their way to the surface

penetrating her consciousness



wanting her…

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