To Be Hushed, by Grace Delaney-Print Books-Bottlecap Press

To Be Hushed, by Grace Delaney

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Grace Delaney
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Poetry, chapbook, 24 pages, from Bottlecap Features.

The chapbook To be Hushed is a free verse poetry collection that is a recollection of real feelings and moments that occurred during Gracie’s secretive relationship. The secretive nature of the relationship was due to the boy's mother's strong disapproval of Gracie for no logical reason. The mother went as far as to accuse the 19-year-old girl of being a pathological liar and threatened to harm both parties in the relationship. Gracie in her everyday life was well-liked by her peers. She was a school teacher, and college student and had a hard time coping with being outcast by her boyfriend's family but was so in love she believed that hiding her relationship from the world was the answer. The problem with secret relations is that there is no accountability and no matter how much love there was shared between the couple there was always this feeling of facade. The relationship would hit peaks of feeling close to real but could never come to a pinnacle. Gracie had to take strenuous measures to keep her boyfriend a secret such as meeting in neutral locations and not sharing details of the relationship with her friends. Due to the pressure at home, her boyfriend suffocated his feelings and in turn, treated Gracie poorly in the relationship.

Gracie felt voiceless and felt that even though she poured her heart and soul into the relationship it was never enough. He crossed boundaries and made Gracie feel a wave of discomfort, hushing her from the world and refusing to listen to her voice. On Valentine's Day, the boyfriend broke up with Gracie, leaving her with nothing but a pen and paper, so she wrote poetry to capture the moments in time and to harness the pain in art. It allowed her to see the beauty in being freed from such a toxic relationship and helped her seize her power back.

Grace Delaney is a Pacific Northwest Native, teacher, writer, and lover of art, coffee, and
children. Grace got her bachelor’s degree and master's degree in Elementary Education from WGU. Grace has had a passion for poetry since she was little and would read Emily
Dickinson's poems every night before she went to sleep. In 2020, during the pandemic Grace began to take her writing more seriously and took time to start creating thematic works of free verse poetry. To Be Hushed is her first published chapbook and she hopes to continue to write and publish poems that resonate with her readers.