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Photo by Dollar Gill on Unsplash

far away from sadness
so numb so far from glee
in crazy times, a touch of madness
knocks the strength in me
is that an island in your arms
a safe place I could be
it’s too soon to tell
I don’t know you well
hell . . .

I need love, but not any love.

you’ve got the warmest touch and such a gentle hand I’m afraid you’ll mean too much afraid you’ll make demands my knees fall weak to stand beside this strong and steady man it’s too soon to tell I don’t know you well hell …


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Photo by Sharon Watters on Unsplash

When I was a kid, one of my Dad’s favorite songs was Johnny Cash’s “A Boy Named Sue.” My dad, a country singer himself, would waltz around the house endlessly singing this silly ditty about the woes of a poor guy whose dad gave him a girl’s name.

He sang the song to get to me because he was an incorrigible tease. You see, back then, everyone was always telling me my first and middle names, Avvie and Robbie, were also boys' names. At the time, they were right. Avvie (or its long-form Avalon, after my mom’s dad,) was a…


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Photo by Bekah Russom on Unsplash

Nursery Tale Night Terrors

today
I live
a poet, a liar, a slut, a nun
a seer and the crazy one who comes undone
a woman who rocked babies
in a lambskin leather coat of arms
one who weathered well with age the harm
of a night-terror cage
locked in sugar-spice layers of little-girl rage
reared in a body with a mutton-penned mind
no escape from the relentless glitch in time
where a daughter
a pretty-pet
scamper-scrolled the ups and downs
the meadow haze of hate
a bypassed
bygone gate
ever goes round and round

a pretty-pet, shutter-shell shot shut away in the dark…


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Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

up through a crack in my sour mood
your words bubble
sweet white-milk froth
one touch
to soothe-smooth that morning’s sting
and all the smarting, silly sorries
stirred by my thirsty-morning pique
float free
from
that twitchy, bitchy red-eyed witchy
faux she
who had been me

limbs laced with lavender
your pale girl slips into the foam
beneath the silken canopy of your kindness
ribs unfold
passion bellows
in, up and out
until my stone-hard head no longer pounds
and
bids you rub my feckless grief in to ease
pain and pained relief

don’t let me pout that nasty stuff…


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Photo by Gita Krishnamurti on Unsplash

it makes me cry
to see the lies
in your pure Pollyanna
pleading eyes
as they shine back from your looking glass
while you press that pink pencil to your lips
pull the corners up a little too tight
to match the denim mini-skirt
knowing its the only thing
that will hug you close tonight

look hard, can’t you see
there’s no reflection
in your morning mirror
beyond this latest man’s projection
of who he wants you to be

don’t send that text give him the first pick what do you expect it’s just a chick flick give him his…


I’ve learned that sharing strategies to cope with depression and PTSD can help and perhaps enlighten others in a dark time

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Photo by Julian Wan on Unsplash

I’ve been pushing deathly darkness deep down in my gut for months now. The bleak black that sent me down the rabbit hole when I was 11 during my first bout with bipolar mood disorder returned about two and a half months ago.

That, combined with PTSD (an ongoing struggle for me) amid the latest round of lockdowns in my community, has made this latest bout of the blues a tough one.

A shared experience

Even so, I see a new light may shine across society about the struggles of those of us who live with mental illness. …


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Photo by Luis Villasmil on Unsplash

On the elements in and out of style

Please don’t make me stay
for “show, don’t tell” time
with all the wannabe
Mr. Kings
who spit out and spout
the leftovers from their writer’s diets.

I’d rather write what I don’t know
and hang out where all the cornered phrases go
lost in all I do not know I know.

Avalina Robin Harvey

I’ve been a poet since I was five. Then after university, I worked at the Toronto Star as a journalist, editor, and public editor. Happier now, I write poetry.

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