March 25

I Like The Driving Rain

I like the driving rain

An angry pour

Spreading like a stain

Threatening for more


The grey is all pervasive

Stealing my peace and quiet

Making my thoughts invasive

Reminding me I‘m not the pilot


Damp rises

Flagstones cold under my feet

Rheumatic aches for prizes

Obvious to anyone on the street


Trees stand in the wet looking neglected

Bare mottled arms flex and creak

Yet under them I feel protected

Reassuring me it’s safe to speak


Meanwhile the earth drinks

Gullet full

Runnels at the brink

Submitting counterclockwise to the earth’s pull

As if it were travelling down my sink

~Charlotte Greer Slater  2.21.2011

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March 25




How does one make it stop?

How do you keep them from hurting you?

I run till I drop

But they keep getting through


You get lulled into a false sense of security

you think you are safe

you let go of your purity

and find that it only chafes


I am battered

I am betrayed

get in line

only to  be dismayed.


Won’t you let me go?

can’t I be free?

am I allowed to say no?

or am I succor for your greed?


Will you or any man ever admit his faults?

can I believe you when you speak?

I cannot jump all the vaults

only to come to the end and be meek?


Don’t you dare love me you traitor

You are not allowed to speak

I am cut as if by an abattoir

and I begin red blood to leak


You are not allowed my succor

you are not given my feast

you are cast adrift without pucker

and lacking courage of the very least


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March 25




I have hope

I have prayer

I believe what I need is

Definitely out there


I have heart

I have soul

I am smart

It takes its toll


I can almost breathe

Loosen the hold

My claws I sheath

I know I am too bold


I am in the moment

I hear birdsong

The sun’s ray sap me like a vent

But I still belong


It is a little after nine

I feel and look fine

I will not pine 

For what cannot be mine.


~Charlotte Greer Slater


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March 25

Great Moments

Sometimes you are aware when your great moments are happening, and sometimes they rise from the past. Perhaps it’s the same with people.


Her life was one in which everything was left undone—letters unanswered, bills on the floor, the butter sitting out all night. Perhaps that was why her husband had left her; he was even more hopeless than she. At least she was gay. She stepped from her littered doorway in pretty clothes, like a woman who lives in the barrio walking to a limousine, stray dogs and dirt on the way.”


“Women fall in love when they get to know you. Men are just the opposite. When they finally know you they’re ready to leave


“I’m tired of my life, my clothes, the things I say. I’m hacking away at the surface, as at some kind of gray ice, trying to break through to what is underneath or I am dead. I can feel the surface trembling—it seems ready to give but it never does. I am uninterested in current events. How can I justify this? How can I explain it? I don’t want to have the same vocabulary I’ve always had. I want something richer, broader, more penetrating and powerful.


The book was in her lap; she had read no further. The power to change one’s life comes from a paragraph, a lone remark. The lines that penetrate us are slender, like the flukes that live in river water and enter the bodies of swimmers. She was excited, filled with strength. The polished sentences had arrived, it seemed, like so many other things, at just the right time. How can we imagine what our lives should be without the illumination of the lives of others?”


Why is it so difficult to assemble those things that really matter in life and to dwell among them only? I am referring to certain landscapes, persons, beasts, books, rooms, meteorological conditions, fruits.” 


Happiness is often at its most intense when it is based on inequality.

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March 25

Fittsy Valentine

On the internet they found romance,

That put both in a sexual trance, 

But each had a gripe, 

That it’s hard to type, 

With a hand stuck down in your pants. 


So they made plans to meet at the Rooster.

He bore flowers intended to impress,

The night ended up with creek water shooters.

And both in a state of undress.


Now words of love are often spoken

Between the man on the hill and the Southern Belle.

Their uncommon bond remains unbroken, 

And they can be found front porch sittin for a spell.


Now Marble Hill has seen its share of heartbreak,

But eventually by and by,

The partnership made for love’s sake, 

Might just give it one more try.


For my Fittsy,

Charlotte von Wolfle Greer

Valentine’s Day 2014

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March 25




I am so very nervous these days- My hands shake, I am so jumpy.  Chris is begging for chances I will not give him, and being way too nice.  I am cringing and waiting for the other shoe to drop.


I sit here in Lexington, Kentucky Cracker Barrel eaten alive with nervous ticks- back against the wall, fearing him eight hours away.


I just want control of my life again, I need that power back.


No more intimidation, so subtle his parents blindly overlook it- no more promises….Just a peace within me and focus where it belongs.


I untether my happiness from my circumstances.


~Charlotte Greer Slater


Category: Hurting When I Write | Comments Off on Fear
March 25

We Must Be Over 30

We Must Be Over 30

When I grow old
I shall dress myself in the artworks of my younger days
I’ll scoop them up around me to decorate myself
I shall rest on their piles in comfort
The life within them will reflect lively color into my cheeks
will cast a catch light in my fading eyes
My poems and prose, my photos and drawings
will tell the story of who I was, of who I still am.
I will repose on the life within them, my works, my joy
Their inherent verve will be my pulse
Instead of fading vitality, see the life and passion, the joy within,
the things that matter so much,
the sating fullness I gained from them,
the desperate importance I placed on the subjects within them.
Disregard my apparent senescence. It isn’t me.
My work – read it, look it in the eye, try it on, luxuriate in it
Sink into the images, visual and verbal
Let them swirl around you and take you to another place
That’s where you’ll find me –
Elegantly draped in their thriving essence
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March 25

Their Adult Realization Is Coming

Their Adult Realization Is Coming

Editor’s note: This was untitled but it deals with how children can be estranged by a parent by many things. Eventually though, children become adults and question everything they were told. And many come to find out the truth. Until then…

I put my love into photographs, slowly pictures replaced people in my heart. I often stifled panic, fearing that I would not recognize their voices if they were to finally call.  For them, our shared memories are bastardized by propaganda, denuded of value, poisoned over time.  I feel as if I sit quietly in an anteroom waiting for death to find me.  Waiting for all the hurt to become too much to bear.  But I am left wondering how much hurt that will be… how long will it take?  How much more will I have to endure?  More importantly, how much will my girls have to endure?

The truth, is it too dangerous for them to see the truth?  Would it spell disaster in their existence?  Or would they bravely come to see that truth?  My girls are the real victims.  How would my poor girls reconcile the truth with their reality?  Would they be able to?  They would have to have a fortitude of epic proportions.

Would it be better just to seep into the background and not ask for such truths to be rendered?  Would it be better for them to just live out their lives in ignorance?  Their father certainly Hope’s they never see the ugly truth of what he is capable of.. the girls would be left feeling like innocent lambs succored by the very devil himself. And the betrayal would burn for all eternity I fear.

I am so sorry MacKay and Piper… sorry for what he did to us.  It is all a lie.. that which he has fed you, and the paramour only swooped in to steal my children from me… she is a pox.  One day she will betray my girls the worst.. she will twist the knife like no other in my girls world.


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March 25

Perfect, After All?

Perfect, After All?

Many years ago, I requested that my then-husband and I attend marital therapy. After years and years of covert, hidden abuse, I thought I was losing my mind. I had reached a point where my fragile sanity was questioning whether I was making the abuse up.
This is what happened when we entered therapy for the first time.
I sit down on the sofa first, my husband sits in the seat opposite before standing up to remove his jacket and stare idly around the room looking I know, for somewhere to hang his precious clothing. I note our therapist clocking this. He takes my husband’s jacket and hangs it on the back of his door.
My husband has shown his hand.
I wonder to myself if our therapist has noticed the first clue of my husband’s character — his unmistakable self-importance. As the three of us have never met before, I know he will be absorbing every cue, both verbal and non-verbal.
I am stiff as a board — my body is tightly wound up; clusters of agony from our 12 years together: heartbreak, tension, and anxiety and trepidation are scrunched up like a ball of old paper. My mind and my soul are heavy with anguish.
When our therapist asks us what has brought us here today, my husband — the love of my life answers coldly —
“Well I think Charlotte should tell us as I don’t even know myself.” A disinterested scoff leaves his possession.
He has shown his hand again. How he — the smart and cunning one — doesn’t realize is beyond me. Despite the depth of heartbreak moving my soul, I still see him for all that he is  — deeply self-loathing, and fervently motivated to prove that the opposite is the case to a human being that he has never before met. That cause is more important to him than his loyalty to his own wife.
I wonder to myself: Don’t you think our own therapist can see through you?
I feel for him. And I am reminded why we are still together; because I have forgiven a thousand sins in the name of empathy and understanding. I have chosen him above myself from the day we united.
I open my mouth to speak and struggle to find voice. Heaving arrests my form; you can hear it in my vocal chords — the hoarseness coming from difficulty breathing, deep in my diaphragm.
I tell the room in between heavy sobbing, that I love my husband more than life itself — that we have been together for 12 years, but we are broken. I tell the space in front of me, that my husband is aggressive and passive-aggressive, that I can’t discern what is real anymore and I don’t remember what is normal from what is not. And I say that I no longer feel safe in our union, that my spirit has been under attack for as long as I can remember.
I break down. I literally, cannot cope.
For all the seriousness of my words, they are underscored by a fear that our therapist will view me as the perpetrator and my husband as the victim — cognitive dissonance running amok and wreaking havoc in my broken mind.
Our therapist spends time listening to my husband’s response, which I don’t recall. I just remember that he was complimenting him — on his intelligence, and his power. My husband was confused, I was not. I knew what he was doing — road testing his instinct that my husband may have NPD.
I know my husband agreed with our therapist’s compliments, but he so dislikes being swindled, or rather — having somebody one step ahead of him, so I see the cogs of his mind whirring fast — trying to establish or verify the authenticity of our therapist’s comments.
I don’t remember exactly, but I think around 40 minutes in, our therapist suggests that taking a personality profile test may be useful — for us to understand each other better. We both agree to take the test.
I know what’s coming.
We spend the next week apart, and seven days later we return to our therapist’s little room, our eyes not meeting once as they have done day after day for eleven years.
Our gentle therapist tells us the profile assessments are complete, and he will now hand us our spouses report to read.
I feel like something or someone has died and he’s announcing the death to us much like a surgeon does to grieving loved ones in the waiting room, when he has failed to save the life of their beloved.
Our therapist explains we will then swap and read our own reports, and discuss whether each one is commensurate with our own perceptions, of each other, and of ourselves. We acknowledge the instructions silently and take the reports he hands to us.
I read the first paragraph in milliseconds before collapsing into uncontrollable grief. I can’t cope with what I am reading. My brain hurts, my spirit is splintering for certain. This is a pain like I have never known before.
The assessment of my husband confirms that he has Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
In this micro-instant, I think my heart shatters into a thousand shards. A million thoughts and fears race through my mind.
I am heartbroken for my husband; the little I know about this disorder tells me that NPD is borne out of suffering and neglect in childhood. What fate befell him as a child?
I am heartbroken for myself too — as I thought it was me that was the source of all our problems; years of covert gas-lighting have totally eroded my sense of reality, I have come to believe that everything my husband had said over the years is true —that in his words — I am “the damager of everything”.
The bittersweet pain of relief is literally overwhelming. I finish reading the three pages of his report, whilst he is still reading the first of mine.
Over the course of the following weeks, I watch as our therapist so carefully ‘handles’ my husband’s personality disorder. He is clear, firm, and plays along to all my husband’s character flaws; his need to be seen as all-powerful, supremely intelligent and superior, and his need to be seen as the victim.
Our therapist plays into his hands. And this is for one reason and one reason only – that were he not to, he would lose this client – my husband would have abandoned the process of therapy if our therapist had tackled him and his personality issues head on. Instead I watched in admiration and awe, of how skillfully he brought out unconscious drives and behaviours in my husband.
In the end, I asked my husband for a divorce. He never returned to therapy after that moment – entirely normal for someone suffering from NPD. Why would they need therapy, when they are perfect after all?

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March 25


Can an empath be broken by a narcissist?

Absolutely. I know I was, but, the breaking of people like me, is like breaking a perfume vial, shattering it to pieces, only to have the alluring scent waft out into the atmosphere, to touch the lives of others, in increasingly profound ways.
It’s like crushing nutmeg, or coriander, and smelling the aromatics, salivating, tasting it in the air, imagining just how sweet and tantalizing this must be, craving for more than a simple whiff.
What we have cannot be contained, and isn’t meant to be contained. Our essence is meant to be shared, to heal, to nurture, and to love.
The Narcissist has no clue just how strong and beautiful we will become, in the aftermath of the hell that they inflict.
Those of us broken to bits by the gutter kings among us will always rise from the ashes, becoming beautiful, unstoppable creatures of divine wrath, with healing in our wings.
Fire purifies. We didn’t ask for it, but we got it, we survived it, and we rise above it, which is something the Narcissist cannot do.
You crushed us, you broke us, and now you cannot stop us. How sad for you, to watch us bloom and grow, while you perpetually wither away on your path of chaos and destruction, forever lost in self-delusion, blaming the world for your self-created sorrows.

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