Poetry, Raw


I once had a dream
That was so dark
A Titan came
To poison the Earth,
Hitler drove
A big black hearse,
And I was trapped
In this damned verse.

I once had a dream
That was so black
The devil himself
Said to send it back.
Mecha monsters
Blue and red
Battled over Earth
And to the death.

In this dream
A slice of yellow cake,
An evil scientist,
And a ride I’ll never take.
I watched the planet
Spreading black,
The Titan and
His staff of death.

He looked at me
And I at him.
This was the end.

This has been,


PS: A slice of yellow cake??? What, was I hungry or something?


Why Are You Here?

I once met up with a fellow writer during my early publishing years. We connected at a local meet-and-greet. We traded books as was familiar with these sorts of events and the conversation continued into email – so old-time, I know. We proposed a time and place. I came equipped with my positive reviews of his book, prepared to discuss and praise.

I’m not sure why he was there.

It didn’t take me long to realize all he wanted to talk about were his own ideas and aspirations.

He must not have had many writer friends, because the bookish communities develop a type of code of conduct. You learn not to tout yourself over much and to be a sounding board when necessary. There’s common respect among persons even across genres and age groups.

I’ve learned to file these encounters away politely and move along. There are so many more intriguing persons to devote my time to. And trust me, I do not mind one bit that you would like to tell me about yourself. I love to listen.

Just don’t be a narc.

This has been,

Fanny T. Crispin


All Things Good and Mortal

Life isn’t fair.

But love and joy and a lifetime of memories are good.

No one can know themselves until they are faced with mortality. I’m not talking about one’s personal mortality. I think most of us are braver than we realize.

I’m talking about the mortality of the people closest to us. We know death is cause and effect. We understand the cycle of life and the inevitability at the end of existence. But when faced with reality is the moment we come to know just what we are made of.

And we fight this ridiculous battle. When IS it time to let go? How much time do we feel we deserve at the end of it all? Is it selfish to hold on? Is it as scary as it seems to go? What does the end look like? Does it hurt? What really lies on the other side?

I was born and raised in an unassuming modern Christian home. We didn’t use labels. My Lutheran family decided we were Lutheran. My Catholic family decided we were Catholic. But we really weren’t either. We just lived this faith thing like it was fact. I suppose most of the time we took it for granted. We got some good theology along the way and some bad theology, too – which simply means to say, we’re very not perfect.

But growing up with faith for a better afterlife brings comfort. The only thing I do question is what will it be like, not whether it will be there or not. I accept that a lot of loved ones have ended up there – hopeful more than I realize. I wasn’t terribly concerned with grief.

Until the call came for my last, living grandparent.

Is it harder because I understand I’ll never get to pop up for a lunch visit again on this Earth? Does it hurt more because I feel the stretch of time and it seems like an eternity without her? Or is it simply that I’ve had more time to love her than my other grands and therefore more love to lose?

Something will take us all. This is natural progression. It’s also a blessing. Sin keeps us from God and the only way to be whole with Him again is through death. This isn’t a worship of death and decay, but a hope of redemption once corrupt nature takes its course. Faith doesn’t make it any easier to bear loss. It just offers hope.

And hope is a wonderful thing.

This has been,



Depression is a Slow Waltz

No depression story is the same.

Here’s mine.

It struck like a tidal wave against my rickety boat. After years of weathering an internal storm, patching my sails together daily, fortifying the hull with spit and blind determination, this one event capsized the little boat.

I was 19. I remember the next four years drowning in tears, always exhausted, in terrible, horrible physical pain I couldn’t explain or fix with vitamins.

I was dirt poor. Didn’t have insurance. I didn’t dream of contacting a therapist.

I didn’t even know I was depressed.

I just sort of chalked it up to sorrow, grief – mourning a frail, broken sailboat of a dream.

Coming home late at night, I would plan out high speed car crashes into trees as a way to end the pain without hurting my family with the truth – I just couldn’t bear to live in my body anymore. It felt heavy. I felt like I was drowning every minute. My chest was tight. I couldn’t inhale deeply or run or do much of any cardio.

Even as I write this, my kitty is worming under my arm trying to get close. She’s so precious. She’s been through it all with me. The day I ran from my dad and hid at a friend’s house for a week, then moved in with some other friends for a few months. Then back. Finally to my apartment where I could breathe. God, I had forgotten how to breathe.

Some friends pulled me out of the storm – unlikely friends. Not the God-friends you expect to see you and help you, but spiritual nonetheless. The kind of people who are just good for goodness’s sake.

In the aftermath, I pulled myself back together. I began to see brighter days. I got on track with promotions and dating and giving myself permission to be happy.

One day I realized all the physical pain was gone. Just gone. I didn’t hurt constantly.

And I can afford therapy – you know, when I actually make time for my appointments.

But this kind of deep, wrecking scar tissue doesn’t heal completely. You’re never really out of the storm just because you find patches of sunlight. I tell myself I’m fine. I’m happy. I’m not in danger.

Today changed that – when I started working on a way to end it without hurting the ones I love. That’s when you know you’re never really out of the water.

I’ll make a therapy appointment.

Thanks for listening.



Health & Wellness

Raise your hand if quarantine got you right in the love handles – and beyond!


I’ve grown up with good genetics, skinny all my life, blah, blah, blah. But I knew in the back of my mind when this miracle metabolism slows down I’ll be in big trouble. I’m lazy. I’d rather bend my brain to an intense problem solving task than bench anything physical. If brain activity burned calories, I’d be set for life! My career is endless problems to resolve and some days my poor gray matter feels like mush.

True story.

But as you probably guessed, it’s a desk job. Now cue the pandemic. Quarantine. Home bound. No more football field parking lots to trudge, no more 4 flights of grueling stairs. It takes me 5 seconds to walk to the coffee pot. At the office, I literally had to cross from one corner of the building to the far corner of a rectangular floor layout.

So here we are. Without cardio and movement, metabolism turns to lethargy. And maybe we’re snacking a bit more too, right? The vending machine is your pantry stocked full for the impending apocalypse.

Around August or September, I started to feel bad about my body image. I realize eventually everything will sag and rot, but during the “young” years of my life, there’s still something I can do about it. I can still change and my cells will respond.

And here I am running 20 minutes a day on my lunch break at the treadmill. I don’t like it. I don’t enjoy it. I’m literally blogging while running because this bores me to tears. But I’m still here 20 minutes a day 5 days a week gradually burning calories as slowly as the love handles crept on.

You know what, I feel better. My waist is shaping down again. My weight doesn’t seem to fluctuate much, but I can see the difference. I’m not pushing or prodding or going crazy with the weights. I’m just showing up for a little cardio, a little movement, and a little change in my eating habits.

How’s your quarantine journey going?

This has been,

Fanny T. Crispin