every woman who heals herself.

Recently, one of my micro-poems was given new life by the wonderfully talented artist and illustrator, Kimothy Joy.

The image has been flying around social media and I am both pleased and humbled by this.

Here’s to healing — men and women, so that we don’t pass on unresolved hurt and pain to our children and through them, our children’s children.

forgive yourself.

put yesterday down

outside the front door,

and leave tomorrow

by the window.

the light will shine on it

soon enough.

hush now.

this is today’s song.

a simple refrain.

speak to yourself with


and rub kindness into your



the wild flowers

are waiting to bloom

from all your broken places.

— forgive yourself.

© Liezel Graham 2019.

on the inside (i am outside).

i wish that i could say

that i have

all the answers.


or perhaps,

. just a few.

that would be good.


that i have

. somehow,

grown fat with wisdom.


i have neither.


. all i have in my hands

are words.


. and none of them are smooth.


they are hungry words

that know how to search

when the lights have gone out.


they are strong words

that know how to break down walls,

one stone at a time.


they are brave words

that know how to open windows,

when all the doors are locked.


they are tender words

that know how to soothe what is broken,

because they remember.


. because,

i remember

. what it is to need water

and hope.


and i have


stumbled right into the middle of my life

still carrying a bag of questions.


. rebellious ones at that.

or, so i have been told.


not fit for one who stands in the shadow of the cross.


. my coat,

is too bright

or too faded

or too there-is-something-not-quite-right


we can see right through that cloak


she does not fit in,

. here on holy ground.


i know.

. i know.


but i can pour shame

onto paper




of grace.


and i can string words into lights

that stubbornly lead the way out.

or up,

. if you believe.



this relentless unmasking

of flesh







into words,

. is all that i have been given

in exchange



that has been taken.


and still

it is not enough?



—on the inside (i am outside).



© Liezel Graham 2019.