Of A Healer: A Touch

“I tucked a warm blanket between these two and the top sheet, so it should be a bit more warm for you,” I said, placing the neatly stacked linens on the edge of the couch.

“Thank you,” said the family member, their eyes burning into the patient laying asleep in bed. I didn’t know their name, they didn’t know mine. I probably wasn’t even on the same planet as them, but something kept me from moving away.

“Can I get you anything else?” I tried, asking myself why I was still there.

The family member stirred, as if coming out of their own dead sleep. They turned to me with a flat look.

“What? Oh, no that should be it. Thank you.”

I didn’t move, still hearing a voice repeat, stay.

“We’re here if you need anything,” I said reaching out to them. As my fingers brushed against the family member’s shoulder they crumpled.

“I just don’t know what we’re going to do,” they sobbed.

-M.E. InkOwl

Roaming- Michael Erickson

Had a poem featured on GoDogGoCafe today! As always this website is a wonderful place to visit. Check it out!

Go Dog Go Café

Photo by Michael Erickson

My soul has gone a-roaming, far and wide.

It was born away by foaming crests of unfamiliar sorrow.

Because it was I who had seen what ear could not hear, nor mouth could speak.

A lone form huddled by a bedside.

With angular face and black threaded hair,

You stranger laid the deepest part of your bosom bare.

Tears streamed from a face filled with cataclysmic thoughts as you encircled your love in a comforting embrace.

I beheld your doubt as it rolled off your nose, and pooled at the side of your beloved.

Now I’ll never be rid of that scene in my head for you held him so close with a fear justified,

But with hope sincere, and a love deeply divine.

Such things are not taught in classrooms and books, these things can only come where one chooses to look,

Now I take…

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Of A Healer: Day One

“Okay, okay. I’ve got this. I’ve totally got this,” I said under my breath as I checked the cart behind me. An assortment of movies, magazines, and puzzle booklets stared back at me as I stood before the closed door reading: 001.

What on earth did you get yourself into? my mind screamed, smelling that cloying sterilized hospital smell I had seen fit to avoid my entire life.

It was my first day in the hospital as a volunteer. I had been to multiple outpatient clinics where everyone was so cheerful. It was like we were on a giant ocean liner on a world tour through every body of water large enough to fit us. Patients and staff all around me were incredibly pleasant as I handed out cookies, water bottles, and granola bars. I was voluntarily standing in a hospital with a cart full of snacks ready to roll through a couple of inpatient units. Me. Who got sick to my stomach just at the mention of the medical field.

And now there I was, waiting to open the door.

Just take a deep breath and jump in, I said to myself. I took a deep breath, puffing out my chest I straightened my back and pulled open the door.

“Hi!” I said as perky and cheerful as a jay-bird in the morning to the first face that greeted me, “I’m with volunteer services!”

As I spoke I stepped further into the dim room. Curtains had been pulled over windows, and the silhouettes of a half dozen people came into view. Sound seemed to be dampened by an invisible wall just beyond the door.

“Can . . . I . . . Get . . . you . . .” My mouth continued to move, forcing out the words as my brain processed what was happening in front of me.

” . . . Snacks?”

There in the middle of the room lay the crumpled form a person. Someone clutched at their hand crying, the rest just stared at me, glowing with ambient light from the hallway.

It was then that I realized the patient had passed.

I didn’t know what to do.

“I-I-I, umm I-I-I-,” I said as words completely failed me.

They just stared on, light glinting from watery eyes.

With a slight bow to the group, and some awkward words I backed out of the room and carefully shut the door. One thought screamed in my head as I watched other people walk by me eyeing me curiously:

I can’t do this. I can’t do this. I can’t do this.

-M.E. InkOwl

Of A Healer is a personal series of stories from my experience in the wide world of healthcare. These tales are meant to entertain and provoke thought. In no way am I looking for a pitying eye, or woe is me comments. I want to highlight some of the many psychological experiences that healthcare employees experience on a daily basis. As with everything in life, there is always more to something when we take the time to learn.

A Song With Many Voices: All the Lonely People

Excited to share this collaborative poem on mental I was able to be a part of! What an incredible and insightful experience.

Blood Into Ink


I have always been here, among the lonely people. Despite having people around me, my battles exist within my head and body. To you, I may look normal, but on the inside is a scene entirely different. My constant companions are sadness, frustration, exhaustion — even a fortified fortress to shield me from what the world has and could continue to do to me. Those walls isolate me from my family. The shadows are filled with creatures that know how to hurt me if I move too close. So, you see, I am one of the lonely people. But I am not alone.
Sarah Doughty)

All the Lonely People—

they converge,

invisible at intersections

of Life and Death,

strangely untouched by hands of those


How can it be that so many similar

do exist while lost

to one another?

All the Lonely People—

they are unalone, and yet

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Self-Love: Wolves Inside My Head


You’ll never finish this, you do realize this?

Why are you even trying?

There’s no way you’ll ever change yourself.

You’re worthless,


You’re broken.

I am not.

You’re a disgusting mess, an embarrassment.

I am loved.

Why do you still exist?

I am cared for.

I have worth beyond the darkness inside of me.

Who are you to tell me who I am?

I am strong.

I am loving.

I am kind.

I am whole.

I am more than you’ll ever know or be.

-M.E. InkOwl

We Could Not Look Away: Not Another 17, Not Another One- A Collabrative Poem

I am part of online writers group from GoDogGoCafe and recently we came together to voicing our grief and sadness over the latest school shooting. This is a heavy topic that needs to be discussed openly and frequently. My hope with these words is to not commiserate in woe and anguish but to inspire reform and change. Understand that we individuals in society can and do have a vital role in changing what happens in our homes, neighborhoods, and countries. Feel free to reblog and share this as much as you can.


Just another day
just another town
bullet perforated backpacks
spilling loose-leaf lined paper, textbooks
onto blood stained sidewalks
helicopters hovering
to give us the birds eye view
I tried to avert my eyes
out of respect for the dead
the injured
but I could not look away
Christine Ray

Even though I should
Because I am ashamed
At the bullets that rain
At the bullet point pain
Etched in their faces, rivulets in their eyes
They were just children, stolen from their time
Not forgotten in these lines
But to their parents and loved ones
It’s a void they’ll never fill, and it shouldn’t
Lives shredded and ruined
17 times we’ve gotten the chance to do better
and for the 18th, we blew it
Just like those children who looked at their killer

Their killer is not Nikolas

The Killer is you
Devereaux Frazier

Seventeen blossoms
seventeen blinks of an eye
seventeen bullets in the body of spring
and those left behind
food to flashback phobias
memory outbursts
Spring won’t be coming
in a town far away
in a country across the sea
right next to me
Basilike Pappa

Running for class president
Running for the Varsity Football Team
Running to get in line for a movie they can’t wait to see
Running to embrace someone they love
Running and laughing with siblings or friends
Running to get to the dance floor before their favorite song ends
Running for exercise
Running for fun
They should never be running from the thunder of a gun
We’re destroying our future for profit and gain
While they run for their lives
And we’re left with questions and pain
Eric Syrdal

Look away, little bird.
The sky has adjourned, rejecting your flight path
well into wrath.
hell hath no fury like the anger turned apathy, semi-automatic rhapsody that plays on
the overhead speaker that once freed us
from maths.

It doesn’t add up, the physics, social studies, introduction to business, life and
death 101.

Nothing could prepare us for the words we don’t have.
Nicholas Gagnier

Lives swung into darkness
and voices numbed
Eyes losing hope
Blood on the hands, soul
screams and tears everywhere

Deafening silence of the death
and roaring sound of the violence
life stripped of its happiness
and tears losing the feeling

Yet again, My heart is hopeful
Lips in unison with the prayers
Trying to calm my self down
Thinking It won’t happen again

But deep down inside
I know we all are living in denial.
Megha Sood

Spare me your
thoughts and prayers.
Spare me your
people-kill-people babble.
Seventeen more names
added to a statistic
that will never be used.
So, by all means,
let’s keep sending
millions of dollars a year
to powerful people
in exchange for turning
a blind eye.
Proving over and over again
that dollars mean more
than lives.
Sarah Doughty

Seventeen more reasons we grieve.
Seventeen more reasons we’re
broken as a nation.
Seventeen more reasons we must
rise up
a giant against apathy, and
willful ignorance.
Destroy the dissidence.
End the agenda of greed.

Our freedoms are not free—
seventeen more innocent souls sacrificed.
Kindra M. Austin

True horror has unfolded,
We watch on glowing screens of disbelief.
With the voices of innocents ringing in our ears,
Fingers swipe it all away.
As others moved on with their day,
I could not look away.

Grief, pain, disbelief,
All right there, before our eyes.
Yet one headline replaces the next,
That gut-wrenching sadness suddenly replaced.
As the topic changes to something else,
I could not look away.

Where is our humanity,
I ask as society moves on from this butchered elephant in the room.
Can’t we just stop and think,
Acknowledge the death, the suffering, the wrongness.
Another day will come and go, setting on our community,
We cannot look away.

Doomed to repeat this dreadful fate,
We need to choose to change.
Insanity is as insanity always does,
As we continue to place ammunition with malignant intent.
What can I do, the individual, the lone soul, this:
I will not look away.
Michael Erickson

Have ourselves
To blame for this
Again and again
An unsolved tragedy
We must hold ourselves to task
For every death. Every child
Like spent shells fallen to the ground
Souls adrift to haunt those who do not act –
Who do not act again and again and again
I cannot look away again, again, again
Again, again, again, again, I cannot look away, not again.
Stephen Fuller

I cannot look away
From the train wreck shit show
This country has become,
Where cash in a senator’s pocket
Outweighs the blood of our children,
Where losing your ‘right’ to own an assault rifle
Is more an abomination
Than Children being murdered in school
Than human beings dying at a concert in Vegas
Than parents burying their babies.
The blood on your hands will not wash away.
I’m with you in Parkland!
Where kids call presidents out on their bullshit.
I’m with you in Parkland!
Where they won’t let hypocrites hide.
I’m with you in Parkland!
Where they call BS on the lies.

I’m with you in Parkland!
John W. Leys




Self-Love: I’m Sorry

I’m sorry it’s the end of the day,

And you’re asleep worlds away.

I forgot to tell you how much I love you,

I never held you close and still.

There were angry words exchanged,

as I was worn down by the stresses of today.

It’s all my fault you ran away in tears,

and I was left feeling empty with a pile of dishes to clean.

And now I stand by your bedside in the half-light,

Wishing I could hear you laugh.

But now I’m standing in the stillness,

with darkness pressing in on all sides.

“I promise, I do love you,” I whisper in your ear.

Because it’s true,

Nothing makes me more fulfilled.

To hear your feet scampering down the stairs,

or your jokes and smiles throughout the day.

I brush my tear from off your cheek,

as I kiss behind your ear.

You are my world,

And tomorrow I pray I won’t forget that.

-M.E. InkOwl

Guest Submissions Still Accepted

Just to let all of you know I am still accepting guest pieces for this month! I’m ever so grateful to those who have already submitted and I could use even more! Here’s what is expected:


I would like guest writers to compose a piece that is about having self-love or compassion for themselves.

This piece can be in poetry form, journal entry, or letter form but must be addressed to you, yourself, the writer.

As always there is a limit of 50 to 1700 words.

You can submit your piece to this email: michael.erickson512@gmail.com

So send them my way!

-M.E. InkOwl

Guest Submission: Kingdoms and Phoenixes

All of these walls In this kingdom All of these fools,

All of these secrets

The velvety curtains Block out the sun

And the throne Has been claimed

By a thousand men

Yet My heart beats to rule

All of them

But I just hide

In a tower

Waiting For happiness

In my absence

They burned this kingdom down

And the smoke filled their lungs

So fast, they did run

But I was left inside

To burn

A crown in my hands,

And the potential filling my eyes

But the water they spewed

Was not enough

To keep this kingdom

From setting fire-

Where did I go

All wrong I loved with all my heart


Where did they all go

I wanted

To draw back these curtains

Make figures in the snow

Dance all night

Despite The bitter cold

But I just hid

In a tower

Waiting for happiness

To come in with the tide

When I peeked through the ash

To see the rising sun

I saw the fire in my wings

And so I did rise, again

To rule

My own Life

In my presence I reclaimed my throne

I rule with dignity and grace

To blaze

To inspire

And not misplace potential

-Chloe C. Salzetti

You can find more of Chloe’s writing at meb4imetu.tumblr.com


Sixty years have passed.

My body, once supple and new,

Has regretfully decided

There are some things it now cannot do.


A handstand is one

Because my shoulders ache and creak,

I cannot shout at all and sundry,

Due to cancer my voice is weak.


I cannot sing, recite this poem,

Or perform lunges at the gym.

The knees tell me no more jogging,

And my eyesight is growing dim.


My back goes out more than I do,

And my hair is going grey.

I can’t sleep at night,

But doze with ease during the day.


Slimming club lady tells me to watch what I eat,

No more cake and less red meat.

She’s a meanie,

One day I’ll fit in that yellow bikini.


Yeah, I’m going to do it

I’m going to get fit.

I owe it to myself

To stop me being a miserable git.


I’m going to love myself,

All the aches and pains,

All the wrinkles and lines,

Before my enthusiasm wanes.


My body is a temple

I’m going to worship,

The lumps, bumps and cellulite,

That dodgy old hip.

You only get one body,

And I’ve got mine.

I can’t get away from it,

So I’ll treat it like vintage wine.


You’d best drink me now

Before I shuffle off.

I’m aged and mature,

But I’ve got a bit of cough!

-Stevie Turner

About the Author: https://about.me/stevie_turner/

Website http://www.stevie-turner-author.co.uk

Amazon page: http://bookShow.me/B00AV7YOTU

Blog:    https://steviet3.wordpress.com/