Author of fiction, poetry, and very sweary social commentary. Editor and writer for Sudden Denouement, Whisper and the Roar, and Blood Into Ink. Founder of One for Sorrow. Founding member of Indie Blu(e).

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Dirt in my mouth—

I’m still spitting grit.

I used to play in the driveway with my Big Foot

monster truck

while Mom and Dad argued in the kitchen;

their voices obliterated the window screen and

shattered my veins.

My bottom lip was always bleeding from

punctures pressed by top teeth, bunny sharp.

My skin was always sweating because my heart was

always howling.

I talked to people no one could see but me, and I was

frightened because they were real to no one else.

Sometimes they visit when I’m half-awake, ageless

faces reminding me that I’ll never be

anything but small for as long as I breathe.

Sometimes they visit when I’m half-asleep, and

I wonder what my mother’s ashes taste like.

 

© Kindra M. Austin

(image: Glamour)

Blood Into Ink

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Blood into Ink and Whisper and the Roar are looking for survivors to share their stories, hope and light in an interview.

At Blood into Ink and Whisper and the Roar, our curators, collective members and contributors have all opened their hearts and souls to share their stories of survival. Now, we would like to hear from you, our readers, and what makes you a survivor.

I cannot be the only one who watches people walk past and wonder what shaped them, wonder why they get out of bed in the morning and what I could learn from them. When I first joined Blood into Ink and Whisper and the Roar I wasn’t sure if I was allowed to call myself a survivor. In comparison to other members, I had hardly been to hell and back. Yet, I have been shown that ‘survivor’ isn’t a trophy you fight for in…

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Blood Into Ink

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I knew my worth when I was hot as fuck and

boys all lined up to

pet my cleft at the blind side of the playground—

dirty fingers

mercifully uneducated in the intricacies of

female anatomy

I knew my worth when I was hot as fuck in

middle school, despite my flat chest and

highly guarded cleft—

face of Helen and an ass that wouldn’t quit,

by the gods, I knew my worth

I knew my worth when I was hot as fuck and

high school boys poorly educated in the delicacies of

female anatomy

petted my cleft with excavating fingers—

I sang hymns for my molested hymen

I knew my worth when I gave birth

two weeks before graduation, and I was in love;

my sweet babe, my savior—

she taught me the truth of my worth

(image: InStyle)

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A Global Divergent Literary Collective

Sudden Denouement and Sudden Denouement Publishing is holding a book giveaway! We will be randomly selecting one name from those who sign-up for our new Email List to receive the Sudden Denouement Publishing title of their choice. You could be the winner of A Sparrow Stirs its WingsMachiavelli’s BackyardI Am A World Of Uncertainties Disguised As A GirlSuperstitionComposition of a Woman, or Anthology Volume I: Writings from the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective. To be automatically entered, sign up for our new Mailchimp Email list.

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My latest on SD.

A Global Divergent Literary Collective

You won’t appreciate the night until it rips you awake late in the afternoon; until it forces you to stare down the cold yellow sun. Then you’ll know the day-walking ghosts—the ones who fraternize amongst parkland rose beds, unaware that their garden tea has aged one hundred plus years. These specters who sport ring-around-the-collar or cut-outs in their chests smile stupid at one another while the drink they swallow whizzes down between their legs like healthy streams of urine. At first you might think that ignorance isn’t so bad; but as the sun begins to descend, necks will bow and chests will weep anew in recognition of reality. Lamenting will stir the twilight, and whisk the sky into black—you’ll recognize the increasing heavy, and at the height of the Witching Hour, you will fathom the pain of a ghoul.

You will finally understand your own kind.


Kindra M. Austin is an…

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Herald Saw Her Ending  

11 June, 2017—Saturday

Herald was lounging in the grand bay window that overlooked the flower garden when the end came calling. Curled up on the yellow seat cushions amongst a few magazines, he’d been surveying the backyard through drowsy eyes. He was a keen hunter once, ages ago in his youth. Still, olden as he’d grown, Herald could sometimes sense a warm-blooded body stirring someplace it oughtn’t be, or catch the glimpse of something flitting, and his heart would beat with familiar eagerness.

On this day, it was a peculiar scent drifting into the kitchen that perked his attention; he squinted in aversion, and noticed the glint of sunbeams bouncing off serrated steel. Herald maneuvered his arthritic body into a crouch, and stared wildly through the window screen. The woman he loved was outside in the garden barely three feet away from him, and she smelled like the earth she’d been digging. Down upon her hands and knees, she was overshadowed by someone Herald had not long forgotten.

He couldn’t comprehend what it was that he was watching; his woman and the caller struggled against one another for just a moment. Then the tang of her escaping blood filled Herald’s nostrils, provoking a rumble that emerged from the pit of his chest. His growling went unnoticed, and all was still in the garden for an immeasurable space of time. He remained in the window seat, round-eyed, and vibrating with tension. When at last the backyard   darkened, and the bats began to fly, the killer rose up from the rose bed, and kicked the face that had been made silent. Herald cussed through the window screen like a sentry willing to defend his castle. But when the sound of frenetic footfall entered the house, grey Herald fled from the window seat, and took refuge inside a kitchen cupboard—the one that stored his food.

Click, clack! Click, clack! Click, clack! Herald recognized the sound. Click, clack! Click, clack!

“I can never unknow you,” the intruder mocked.

Those hollow words were the last human noises that Herald would hear for two desolate days. And then, the screaming would begin.

© Kindra M. Austin

Jimmi Campkin ❤

A Global Divergent Literary Collective

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I’d known The Boy about six years before I realised he had feelings.  Until then, I’d assumed he was like a dead tree – enigmatic and interesting to look at but essentially hollow and lifeless.  The Boy only made sense on drugs – taken by himself and his audience – but in that narrow alleyway of lucidity there was a path to reaching him.  Like those on the fringes of death who witness the long path to the bright light, if you were willing to get as fucked up as he could and did, you’d find windows where he made sense.

I remember lying on the floor, smashing my teeth on a brick, convinced it was a stale piece of bread, and seeing him standing above me, upright, without the usual hunching of the shoulders.  His voice clear and concise, not broken and wavering.  I crawled in the general direction…

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Devereaux is a dear heart, and stunning writer. I’m happy to know him. ❤

authenticitee speaks

Super excited about this #WriterCrushWednesday featured poet! Unlike most of the writers featured I did not meet this poet via Instagram’s thriving Writing Community.

I can’t really say how I learned of his work. I’m guessing the occasional “scroll, skip, skip, scroll” method of discovery served me well the moment I landed in his world here on WordPress.

Surely this is not a teenager writing with this much depth, I thought. Mesmerized by his gift, I instantly became a fan. Devereaux Frazier is a genius. Yep. A genius. After all that’s how I chose to rationalize the indelible impression he had made.

Scroll, click, click, scroll.

Um wait there’s more? More than a genius? Oh. A genius who had recently learned that he was autistic.

He Speaks…

I Have Aspergers, And I Hate Myself Most Of The Time

So, where did we leave off

My eyes always drift

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