Thank you, Sir, Can I Have Another? – Stephanie Bennett-Henry


Picture Credit: Midge Belickis©2012

Thank you, Sir,
can I have another?
I wasn’t quite clear
the first dozen times
you called me a bitch,
a whiny female,
Tell me again
how I’m dramatic,
overreacting, just in the way.
Tell me how
I’m ruining everything for you
just by talking.
Somehow my voice
got a firm grip on your balls
and the more I talk,
the more they shrivel away.
You’re losing your power,
testosterone, masculinity,
to my truth, my fight, my words…
you are weak and scared.
I don’t even care about you
or your twisted opinion
about the kitchen I should be
standing in, but you are terrified.
My voice is scaring the shit
out of you, and I gotta tell you
it’s funny.. yes, I’m laughing..
at you. I am everything
you want to be, I am everything
you thought you were,
I am everything you’re not,
and will never be.
I’m not competing with you.
I’m not threatened by you,
but you… filled with so much
fear that one day,
you will wake up to see
that we both get paid the same wage
for the same job,
pay the same price for a haircut,
and we’ll walk down the same street
without anyone yelling “bitch.”
That day scares you,
but it’s coming…
brace yourself.

© Stephanie Bennett-Henry 2016


You can connect with Stephanie on Raging Rhetoric, and find her exquisite writing on Stephanie Bennett-Henry, Instagram, Twitter, and on her website.

Dear Walmart


Dear Walmart,

We are writing in regard to your Razor Blade Suicide Scar Wound Latex Costume that some geniuses approved to mass sell for Halloween this year. It’s good, but it isn’t gold star good, and if you’re going do something right well you may as well do it up good.

So here’s the thing Walmart, we’re here to help you, because not only are we courteous that way, but we also happen to know a thing or two about suicide. You should probably write this down.

Clearly you are trying to make a buck off of one of the most devastating things that could ever befall a family, hell why stop there? You could pump an entire line out of this!

If you are not quite sold on that idea, perhaps you can add a crown of “fine” to what you already have, for all the times she pretended to be “okay” along with a beautiful sash, worn like a beauty queen, that says, “I finally did something right.”

Maybe you can add a cool feature for the blood to shoot out of the veins after the razor tries to find what it looks like on the inside.

Maybe add a straight jacket and a bucket of psychiatric meds for the ones who don’t quite get the job right and they live with the notion that they failed at that too. Add a belt, so they can stick that failure under it. Give them a rope so they can hang that failure up around their neck and go out with a big bang. May as well add some fireworks for the festivities too.

Maybe a speaker that repeats a permanent goodbye on a loop of forever to haunt the ones who will never understand.

About that line though, think of the cash pouring in when you add the:

Grieving Mother Costume: Comes complete with a lifetime of guilt, stigma, and shame. Throw in some latex wrinkles for the torment of unanswered questions about what they could have done differently, and why couldn’t they see the signs.

You could add a cheap vanilla scented candle from your crafts section, and some of those fake flowers that are everywhere in your damn store (two birds, one stone) some heavy drapes to symbolize the locking away of their souls.

Oh and also add a few bottles of cheap whiskey for the slow decent into alcoholism that some Mothers often deal with when the pain becomes too much. That’s a winner right there. I’m thinking you could sell that for at least $29.99.

Maybe think about the Suicide Survivor Costume. You’d add one of those tacky letters you carry, like an “F” for Failure or “D” for Didn’t do it right, or “W” for Walmart is a disgusting corporation who makes money off of the backs of people who battle every fucking day with their own tortured minds, we can brainstorm it out.

They’ll wear it like Hester fucking Prynne, so all can see their shame as if they didn’t live with it every single day. And when they ring the bells to get their sweet treats, the tricks in their minds that tell them they are worthless will blaze on their chests thanks to bloodsuckers like you.

For these extra add-ons, add another $10 a piece. Full costumes can be sold for $39.99 and all profits can go to the warped corporation that is Walmart.

We’re really looking forward to working with you on your new ignorant fuelled Halloween 2016 Costume Line. May you all never be taken under by your own minds, and may you all find the compassion you have not given anyone else.

Warm regards, Motherfuckers,

Nicole Lyons & Stephanie Bennett-Henry

Update: The Mighty has published this piece which has been updated with Walmart’s response to the costume makeup being sold on their online store.

January – N.R. Shepherd




I dug up a notebook, and blew off the ashes.
With my hands in my pockets, and my chin tucked to my chest,
I took a stroll through the pages of opiate abuse,
and lusting a harlot. Walking this gravel lane of memories,
no wonder I ended up dangling from an extension cord.
The world could have stopped spinning,
and as far as I was concerned…it had.
With my heart in chunks, hanging from my ribs,
and prison in my future, the heart-broken-record
on the spinner, played around the clock.
Autumn death had coated the walls,
and frost, covered the floors.
Just me and this damn dog, whose nails click-clack
the hardwood, raising the hair on my neck and
boiling the blood flowing the sewers of my body.
“Someone has to die”…Well, someone had….
Doors nailed shut, and the windows boarded up.
I was haunting my own home…
Sleeping in a hoodie, and not showering for days.
Filth filmed my skin, darkness glazed my eyes.
A constant dispute, with those within me,
and speaking aloud to the apparitions, of those I’ve once loved.
I still can’t say, how I ever made it to spring …alive.
These pages, have never got any warmer, although summer.
Sometimes, the clouds part a moment, and shine little.
I squint, and turn my head.
A part of me is gone, lost in January,
and January, will be forever in my heart.

©N.R. Shepherd 2016



You can pray if you want, but God’s not here this evening. ….It’s just you and I under this pale moonlight, dancing… N.R. Shepherd

For more of N.R. Shepherd’s brilliant words, follow him on Instagram and Facebook.

Sit pretty









I want to be cruel. I want to lash out at everyone
who has used me, and I want to do it over
and over again. I want them all to know
what ungrateful feels like. I want them
to wear the cloak of unloved, slip into taken
for granted, and sit pretty in thankless.
I want them to feel what it is like to be sliced
open so the vampires can feed. I want them to give
and give and give until they have nothing left
to give, and then I want them to give some more.
And then maybe, just maybe they will understand

©Nicole Lyons 2016

the gift




I would shed my skin
to gleam bones
for you, in every
way you would never
dare ask. And that.
My want to bare
souls while others
skim pretty, is the only
gift I have that is
worthy enough, to give
to you.

© Nicole Lyons 2016

but you were



Not all prisons
have locks
not all secrets
are sacred
but you
midnight whispers
trapped inside
twisted minds
and heavy hearts

© Nicole Lyons 2016

the offering


Photo Credit- Brooke Shaden

I bled out
and into him
for him
every time
he asked

And he asked

And I withered
as I bled
while he watched

© Nicole Lyons 2016