So You Want to Quit Drinking

Nicole Marie:

An amazing piece by an amazing writer and a good friend. A must-read, drinking problem or not.

Originally posted on Running on Sober:

(the following poem contains profanity and raw imagery. it is not intended for young, nor sensitive, eyes. it is inspired by several bukowski pieces, each linked to in the footer. while bukowski, to my knowledge, never sobered up, there are few who understood alcohol’s powers as well as he did. I’d like to think he had both bluebird and kraken in his heart, and would not hesitate to let you borrow either, or both, though he’d probably ask you for a six-pack in payment. hey, we all have our demons, baby. if you need help, get some help. don’t let them win. you’re worth saving.)


so you want to quit drinking

after bukowski

so you want to quit drinking
give up the bottle
clean up
dry up
grow up

so you’re finally ready
to quit waking up
in strange places
with spit
on your face
in your…

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it was mourning
in a quiet, orange sunrise

it was a warm mattress
with warm bodies,
central heating

snow dusted front porch,
coffee set to brew its heavy, familiar self,
a thing of happiness, twisted
when paired with death

6:39 and the animals
were asleep, I was asleep,
comfortable actually

funny how even the
paint on the walls
looks different now

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When We Are Here


Somewhere, ages ago now
I was setting sail on bones and ash,
catching the wind with an old t-shirt,
watching you and everything I knew
turn doll-size in the distance.

Miles had spread at a viral rate
by the time I went overboard and you


were already there to buoy me back to shore,
to refill my chest with all the reasons there were to stay
and when I opened my eyes all I noticed was the
brilliant orange of the sun as it left us.

So I’ve been using all your edges to keep me upright
but you’ve never seemed to mind (you’re too busy
seeing me in some post-apocalyptic calm, something
I cannot), you who chooses over and over to
stand out in the rain with me.

It’s all so surreal now, way back behind us,
and it feels like someone else’s temporary sorrow
when we are here, cradling the shiny newness of a
living, breathing thing that has your mouth, my chin, your nose.

It is almost impossible to think how simple
a decision it was, to look into your eyes, nod, press my mouth,
my body to yours and suddenly we were changed.

I think I’ll spend forever thanking you.


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you are little more than
silk against my breast,
eyes closed with gentle
willingness while I am
frantically carving every one
of your miniscule movements
in a place where I can pit them
against my own lack of comfort –

these early suns and moons
are all those ones we should
remember like dreams, if
only I could stop trying to
decode the twitching of your
eyelids, counting your lashes,
listening for your ocean breath
through a misshapen shell –

you are content despite
your mother’s beautiful
weariness, her eyes that
are glass no matter your state
and I have been told that I
will still sneak to you at night,
when you are much larger than
I am, if only to steal a little peace.


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Illusions of Safety

Nicole Marie:

A beautiful post by Lisa Stowe; because sometimes we all need a reminder to stop taking things for granted.

Originally posted on Lisa Stowe - The Story River Blog:

I remember a windstorm a few years ago. In the mountains you can hear the wind coming from far away, roaring up the canyons. You feel the tension, the stillness of waiting, knowing you can’t stop it. You watch the huge evergreens around you and how the tops start to sway. The wind is up high still, but that roar. It’s coming. The trees start to bend and then to whip.

I remember sending thoughts out to fir and cedar and hemlock. Hang on. Dig your roots in and hang on. Most did.

Have you ever taken a stick and bent it over your knee, snapping it in two? Remember that sound, that dry crack? Now imagine that sound magnified, deepened into something you feel through your feet touching the earth. Give that sound the background of the wind screaming past you. Follow that bone-deep snap with something like thunder…

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something beyond the smoke


I open my mouth and

all that crawls out is love

in a way I’ve never seen it

before, thin as silk but

lassoing mountains nonetheless.


If I never believed in

something beyond the smoke

I did when you were filling

in the dip in my chest that

was meant only for you –


my heart left my body

on the same day

he was born,

your great grandfather –


and I swear your hands

were warm from holding his.



Thank you to everyone who sent well wishes and congratulations our way. Mommy, Daddy and baby are all home and doing wonderfully. Our beautiful little boy entered this world right on time, May 26th, 10 PM. I have no doubt his great grandfather had a hand in it all. We couldn’t be happier – it’s hard to look at my son and not have my eyes well up. We are being careful to enjoy even the tiniest of moments within our new family of three. The photo above is from a very special newborn shoot with ShayLeigh Photography. Isn’t he the handsomest?


If you’d like to help us win a free 5X7 from the photoshoot, just click on that link above and it will bring you to the photographer’s Facebook page; simply scroll down and “like” that same photo of our son, and also “like” the photographer’s page to help us win.

Peace and love to all. I’m so full of both at the moment. xo


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I’m Going to Be a Mommy!


As you are reading this, my husband and I are hopefully somewhere holding our baby boy. (That’s assuming this kid doesn’t decide to make a late appearance!) Either way, today, the 26th of May, is my official due date. The day our entire world is destined to change in the most beautiful way. But today represents something else as well: it is my sweet, funny, fiercely missed grandfather’s birthday, and we have all been keeping fingers and toes crossed that he’s told my son how cool it would be to share a birthday with his great grandpa.

I’ve scheduled this post ahead of time to let everyone know that while I may be disappearing for a bit, I won’t be gone permanently. I’ll just be taking some time to learn how to care for a very tiny human being and soaking up every precious moment as a new mother. So, thank you so much to those of you who have been following my blog; I am grateful for every single like, comment, and share. I’ll be back soon to read more of your beautiful work, and will likely be bursting at the seams with poems about my son and every small new thing I’ll be in awe of.

Until then, be well, my friends.


Nicole Marie


If you’re coming across my page for the first time, thank you for visiting! While I’m away, here are some pieces I hope you might enjoy:

a poet to her son

My Grandfather Who Lingers Still

This is How You Grieve Him



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who I am and who I will be

I am having trouble
imagining you outside of
my imagination
outside of my own skin,
you are still so much a part of me
that there is no explanation
for the waves that move
without routine between my bones

your eyes are still all
clouds and smoke –
I dream of your mouth
like cinnamon
that will bow,
that will open
and call out for me

this foreign, self-defining thing
I’ve put up on the mantel
and dusted like some
undeserving prize is
something too surreal to
take down, to examine too
closely for detail, I am
so afraid it will slip smoothly
between my fingertips

for now you are still
the loveliest figment
nestled between who
I am and who I will be,
this small thing, this
awkward fleeting girl
with the readjusting
heart for you, my son.


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You Told Me Not to Tell

Nicole Marie:


Originally posted on The SisterWives:


In the wake of a news week where we hear yet another story of abuse and violence in the form of molestation against young girls, words were written that stopped a whole lot of people in their tracks. A friend and fellow blogger wrote a post that brought people to their feet, asking us to shout with our virtual voices to #CallHimOut – because enough its enough.

It’s time for us to stop being quiet and let the world know that THIS IS NOT OKAY. It is also not okay to protect the perpetrators and abusers. The victims have no reason to be ashamed, and they should never feel as though they have to protect the monster that stole their innocence and violated their bodies.

Today, it is our honor to have Nikki, another brave young woman coming forward to tell her story. It is hard to read.  It will make you feel a…

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interior decorating



matters of the heart

are barely

smoked up rooms

where you lay down your bones

when you’re feeling




I sport wallpaper skin

you nail photographs

to my chest



around our shortcomings


I’ve never been one for interpretive dance –


all elbows, you are

whole body, I am


so now


I steer my grief

so much like a ship’s sails

around your ambiguity

that is haunting me


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