Hands Over Eyes.

Abstract art by Yours Unruly

Hands Over Eyes

Stand behind me
Take your hands and
cover my eyes, so
I don’t see all
those doubts that
take flight in me,
so I have nothing new
to fear. No new
heartache to blindside me
Loss always coming

Whisper filthy things
in my ear, so it can
breathe deep your words,
drowning out the
voices in my head
screaming “be cautious”
Imploring me to not
be so reckless with
another one so

Give me new skin
to touch
so I no longer feel
like a castaway
in dark harbor
full of scabs and scales

Let me feel your warmth,
as hope slips inside me.
Face to face now.
You teach me that
everything opens
with time- eyes. minds,
and even a heart damaged
by love undone.

-Tosha Michelle



At eight years old.
I hold my Granny’s hand
The one that use to hold
my Papa’s hand
The one she
held for 32 years
The one she won’t
hold again.
I wonder how much
different mine must feel

We stand in a darkened room
Sharp with the taste
of ash and loss,
full of family and flowers
Tissues to cheek,
eyes red.
Grief pouring out,
like the holy spirit
at a Pentecostal revival

My Papa in his coffin.
dead. I struggle to
The adults talk of
angels wings, gossamer,
and light
Remarking how peaceful
he looks.
Granny lays her head
on mine and weeps

I place a rose
in Papa’s cold hand,
and kiss his cheek
Hoping he will
answer me
“Papa, I love you.
I’ll take care
of Granny
and hold her hand,
until she sees you again. “

In those few fragment moments
where consciousness
and grief collide.
I understand loss’ lexicon
That is comes off
like synthetic fabric
fused to a body
in a fire
taking skin with it

-Tosha Michelle

Watchmaker Analogy (Out of Sync)


A toast to the last sip of sanity,
to a friendship, I thought would never end
Drink from the bitter flute of regret
as chaos and mistrust oxidize
the palate of life

Cheers to a relationship
swallowed whole by anarchy
The struggle of bosoms buddies
maderized on sea of lunacy
Kindred spirits no more

Raise your glass to a hint of
false truths, fair-weathered faith,
famished reason, futile declarations
Assumptions paired with judgment in excess-
verbal checkmate.

Here’s to “Judas’ daughter”
Dante’s stage prop, a sterile cross,
and a refermented simulacra Jesus.

-Tosha Michelle



Our Lost Spring.


Do you recall our lost spring?
The time of never ending evenings
Long walks through the park
Hands that never parted
Love found amidst dandelion promises
and sweet grass memories

Do you recall our lost spring?
The time of moonshine and fireflies.
Our melody so loud, it drowned out the crowd.
No pretense. Only divine truths.
We didn’t need anyone’s approval.
All we saw was the potential in each other

Do you recall our lost spring?
The time of sweet wine and soul drenching passion,
endless kisses that melted into the night dew,
glistening on a bed we never wanted to leave,
where all I could taste was forever on your skin.
and we pulsated in time, with our own celestial rhythm.

Do you recall our lost spring?
I do. Memories sweep in when the days become short,
and Jack Frost’s icy breath shivers down my neck.
My soul frostbitten. My heart cold.
I close my eves for a brief moment
I can smell your fresh untainted scent.
I’m transport back to our warm sultry lost spring,
where hope dances in on zephyrs
Love beams off clouds of cotton
Spring becomes nectar in my veins,
and withe a faint smile. I savor what could have been.

-Tosha Michelle


cropped-cropped-tumblr_m4qag8ajdk1qj2u1wo1_5001.jpgOn days like today.

I wish I had a hand to hold.

arms to embrace.

a smile to calm me.

a shoulder to rest my head upon.

My restless mind won’t be still.

thoughts turning in constant motion.

Feeling empty.

Weary in spirit.

Tired body.

On days like today.

I wish that the presence I missed,

missed me and was present.

I Cried.


I swear I am not as angst filled as my poetry might suggest. 🙂

I Cried.

I cried for you.

Drenching my pillow.

Liquid fragments of a broken soul.

They left a trail from my heart to my cheek.

so much angst and sorrow.

a ballad of a dark kind of madness.

Tears falling down.

Each drop a cadence of gut wrenching pain.

The reverberation of nothing and everything.

Crashing down.

In a crescendo of grief.

Leaving me mute.

My version of “Clean”

Confessions of a Reformed Southern Belle: A Poet’s Collection of Love, Loss, and Renewal.

My book of poetry, Confessions of a Reformed Southern Belle: A Poet’s Collection of Love, Loss, and Renewal. is now available on Amazon. I would be honored if you read my words. I’m certainly no Whitman. I don’t claim to be. My poetry is simple and a reflection of me. You’ll find a melancholy, introspective, and somewhat snarky woman between the covers of the book. A woman who is no stranger to loss and heartache, but a woman who also has experienced love in its purest form, along with moments of great bliss. This book is an expression of my heart. Is it a work of art? I’ll let you be the judge. I can tell you, it was a labor of love. Be gentle.

I’d like to share the Foreword with you. Note, it was written by USA Today reporter, Ron Barnett.

How do you write a foreword for a book of poetry that has you on the verge of tears, then laughter, then soaring through the high places only a true poet can take you? Hang on, and check your preconceptions, because Tosha Michelle is about to take you on a journey through depths of the heart, and you won’t return unchanged.
I have a particular bias in support of this beautiful woman-child, because I am the guy she calls “Dad.” I’m actually not her biological father, but I have loved her deeply since before I married her mother when Tosha was eight years old, and I’m pretty sure she feels the same way about me.
She was always a witty little girl, with an incredible imagination and a talent for storytelling. And growing up, she read – a lot. She had some vision difficulties and would hold a book right up to her nose to read, but it seemed like she could read from cover to cover in a few minutes. I’d like to take some credit for her writing, being a writer myself, but I think she soaked it in on her own mostly, through all that reading she did as a child. She developed a love of words and stories and the worlds they transported her to, and her talent blossomed as an adult.
She also spent a lot of time with her grandmother, and around the good folks of the small town of Walhalla, South Carolina, where she absorbed the Southern culture that marked her personality and writing style. She has broken that mold, as the title of this collection hints, but is forever marked by the richness of the Carolina ambiance. The pathos of love lost early in life, recollection of the pains of adolescence and self-doubt still haunt her sometimes, but she has found her salvation through creativity – through expressing those dark feelings in verse, and in her singing. (If you haven’t heard that, you’re in for another treat.)
I’ve been a writer and journalist for a long time, and part of that time as an editor. When I read material written by others, I invariably find myself mentally editing, changing things around to the way I would have written them. In this collection, however, I found very little that I would touch as an editor. Tosha has an incomparable sense of rhythm and diction and style that are uniquely hers.
I’m no poetry critic, and I am biased in this case, but I think you’ll agree with me that her poetry is for the ages. She’ll take you through the depths of melancholy and loneliness with “Yearning,” and sing a “Love Song to the South” that will take you back to a simpler, more beautiful time. She’ll have you cracking up with a poem about her cat, dancing with her “Goddess of the Night,” and ready to take on the world, with “One Voice.” One of my favorites is her expression of soaring of the universal soul in the Whitmanesque “Edges.”
And everything she writes cries out with the words of the poor little forgotten book on the shelf – Read Me! Go ahead and turn the page.

Upon a Time Once.

A Upon a Time Once.

What once was,
but never was.
A story left untold.
Tomorrow’s forever forestalled.
Today’s regrets,
Yesterday’s dreams.
Memories turned cold.
Lost in bittersweet’s
What could have been

-Tosha Michelle


Stay with me
And sit awhile
On the porch
In the swing
And sway
With me.

Stay with me
Hold my hand
Sing to me

Tell me stories
Of magic and pixie dust,
Of wrestling with dragons,
Riding unicorns,
Of a valiant prince, and
The damsel he so loved
Of Narnia and Elysium,
Far beyond, the looking glass

Before the Pied Piper plays his tune,
Before the clock strikes midnight,
Before the wolf bares his teeth,
Before the hourglass runs out,
While there’s still time,
To wish upon a star,

Stay with me
And sit awhile
On the porch
In the swing
And sway
While once upon a time
Slowly fades away…

-Tosha Michelle