Write This Second: A Poetic Memoir

Cover Art

Write This Second actively demonstrates how incest, racism, rape, addiction, poverty, eating disorders, being silenced, domestic violence, suicide and PTSD will continuously plague generations of women and their children until we learn to speak to and listen to and believe one another. My workshops cultivate empowerment by inspiring participants to bear witness to their lives through creative self-expression using poetry and collage, as I have done in my own life. Poetry led me from being a high school dropout to being a master’s degree recipient who thrives by striving to transform communities as a poet, collage artist, advocate, and facilitator. Order, Write This Second: A Poetic-Memoir here or at local bookstore  published by Nothing But the Truth on March 19, 2019.

See what these brilliant authors have this to say:

“Kira Lynne Allen’s first full length book of poetry is so gorgeous, so rich in honesty, truth, pain and healing, beauty and rage and humanity, that it is going to change lives. It gives permission, and that means that it gives life. It gives off heat and fresh air. It exposes, encourages, challenges, delights. I found it thrilling.” —Anne Lamott, New York Times bestselling author of Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life  

“Kira Lynne Allen works from the strong tradition of Audre Lorde, Sonia Sanchez and Janice Mirikitani. Write This Second tells of an America so many don’t want to see, refuse to see, an America where abuse and racism go hand in hand, where the traumas of family history merge with the traumas of the history of people of color in this country. But this astonishing book is also a work of hope and recovery, of a survivor who has healed herself and passed on a new legacy to her daughters and to her readers.  I can’t recall the last poetry book that made me cry. Write This Second made me cry. Read it for it’s witnessing and for it’s healing. For the triumph of this poet as witness and seer.”David Mura, author of Turning Japanese: Memoirs of a Sansei  

“This is one of the most courageous books I’ve read. With “Write This Second” Kira Allen brings forth a survivor’s howl. There are no easy words here. Allen journeys us through two decades of abuse, devastation, and silence to her triumphant rebirth. Allen is a Phoenix rising from the ashes of trauma. These words are her wings. Let’s celebrate her flight.” Mariahadessa Ekere Tallie, author of, Karma’s Footsteps

The book’s title poem is below:


When the goal is Escape

Fight or flight

consumption or deprivation

self-sabotage or being frozen in place

They all work for a while

When none of them work

When fear of incest or racism or rape or addiction

or silence or domestic violence

or suicide consumes you

When you want to take a step towards life anyway

but you have no idea how

When you’re ready to remove the gag that keeps you from speaking

When you’re trying to think of a plan            a way out

wishing you had a better skill set

When you think I can’t have one more ________________

before I get it together or I’ll be dead

When you are sick and tired of being sick and tired

That will be the beginning

Seize that second of clarity and WRITE

Write to reclaim life

to recover consciousness

to resist feelings of unworthiness

to understand yourself

to define yourself

How do you decide to believe you are worth the work

When it feels like you never got to decide anything

When what you eat or wear or listen to or do with your very own body

depends on what someone else wants or needs from you

How do you keep the taste of fear from souring your stomach

You write to understand

the difference between

what forms your anger and

what ties your tongue

Write about the secrets

You think will make you spontaneously combust

Because being too little to understand

or unconscious

or just trying to survive

Doesn’t mean you deserved it


Because secrets eat at your guts and kill you anyway

If you let them

Because even when you don’t feel like the same person anymore

the secrets don’t go away

Because it is only in writing them down and speaking them out loud

that they lose their power

Because the only way out is through

Because recognizing you were always tenacious creative and resilient

or you’d be dead already

Gives you real power

the power to choose love over fear

The power to speak to and listen to and believe one another

Because we need to know what

Strength smells like

Joy sounds like

Tenderness looks like

Love feels like

We trace

our bodies

to illuminate

the difference


what we got


and what is true

We honor our

Precious selves

who use all their survival skills

to make it here

At last

we write to gain perspective

learn to discard shame that was never ours

and delight in our divine identities

We write to inspire each other

to grasp an appreciation for each second of our lives

to practice mercy patience and steadfast love

we got to start on the inside and work our way out

Write this second

we call across the generations

It’s time to break the silent secret spell

keeping us buried above ground

Write this second

It’s time to evoke consciousness

put an end to the endless fears

we got to heal our marrow

Write this Second

I too    You too    We too    have another way

It’s time we speak to and listen to and believe one another

It’s time to ignite a life of grace guided by faith love and action

Back Cover Art

2 thoughts on “Write This Second: A Poetic Memoir

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s