Linda M. Crate’s poetry, short stories, articles, and reviews have been published in a myriad of magazines both online and in print. She has ten published chapbooks: A Mermaid Crashing Into Dawn (Fowlpox Press), Less Than A Man (The Camel Saloon), If Tomorrow Never Comes (Scars Publications), My Wings Were Made to Fly (Flutter Press),  Splintered With Terror (Scars Publications), More Than Bone Music (Clare Songbirds Publishing House), The Samurai (Yellow Arrowing Publishing), Follow the Black Raven (Alien Buddha Publishing), Unleashing the Archers (Guerilla Genesis Press), and Hecate’s Child (Alien Buddha Publishing). She is also the author of the novel Phoenix Tears (Czykmate Books).



they told her to forgive and forget,
but she could not forget when they
always left her hanging,
when they pressed her laughing about
everything and anything that made
her different,
she couldn't forget all the ways they
made her feel inferior and as if she were
always second place;
she had always forgiven them in the past
only for them to abuse her again and again—

now she was done forgiving and forgetting,
she would not forget and she would hold her
grudges and her boundaries to honor and protect
herself from all of their cruelty;

a part of her was angry, a part of her wanted
to lash out and so she wrote about this nightmare
man who got the revenge when the idea
crossed her mind; and as she laid down and closed
her eyes she felt as if tomorrow might be a better day—

but when she woke up, she found out all that
wronged her were dead and the nightmare man was waiting
for her instructions on whom to go after next.


sometimes the solitude helped her,
but any more it was just a reminder
that he was gone;
she could still see him running down
the corridors and laughing with his blue
eyes gleaming in glee—

her husband told her to let him go,
but she couldn’t;
and so he left her and she was alone
in this old house with nothing but memories

that haunted her—

she sometimes felt like a living ghost,
and so one day she went to the forest and begged
the moss and roots and trees to take her
back because she could not endure this
humanity any longer;

and so they did—

she found healing in being a tree,
more healing that anyone had given her
with their good intentions.


when everyone she loved died,
she decided that she would grow
wings and fly away;

but they said outright and cruel
lies about her even if she just lived
her life in the tree eating simple fruits
and nuts—

they accused her of stealing children,
of being cruel and savage,
they insisted that she tore souls out of

and because she had no friends and family
to defend her almost everyone
believed these things to be true—

and so one day she decided that she would
show them all what monsters they were,
using her magic she plastered their crimes all over
churches and schools and buildings all through the town
before fluttering off to another town leaving behind
only a few feathers to damn her;

she could’ve been their friend had they let her.
but instead they made of her an enemy.