Secret Message Society - May Centerfold

The May Secret Message Society Centerfold is Hayley Sarah.

I cannot remember how I first discovered Hayley. One of those untraceable internet phenomenons that ended in a glowing treasure chest of #secretmessages. My first encounter was reading a memorable blog post, so ancient and mysterious I can't even find it anymore to link to it. I was so touched by the vulnerable and tenacious self-portrait she shared. It pulled me into the rest of the post, which in turn pulled me into the rest of her blog.

The woman has a certain je ne sais quois that leaves me wanting more. "Don't stop," I want to say every time I interact with her writing voice. "Give me more of you because I feel certain the air is easier to breathe with you close by." I like seeing the world through her eyes. She makes my messiness feel right at home. She's one of the exciting new voices I'm tuning into. I'm excited to feature this interview with her, and love the compelling piece she made for the Zine centerfold.

Earlier this week I told her, "I just want to reiterate how powerful your centerfold zine art is. it is an anchor for this issue, as i feel like my world is falling apart."





Hayley Lau


Hayley Sarah

Secret mutant power: 

Watching with soul-eyes, symbol-eyes, energy-eyes, open eyes for expanding my personal possibilities.

Current art medium/creative endeavor I am exploring: 

Academic assignments about facilitating healing.

A Secret Message I found in the last week: 

“You are an agent of transformation and compassion.”

A stranger I interacted with recently: 

A busker with a keyboard playing haunting classical music. It was beautiful.

His entire body was involved in the playing and nothing seemed to exist for him but the music. I was the only one who stopped to listen. I only had time for one song. He captured my heart, but I was filled with thoughts about how no one else was appreciating him. When he was done, I smiled at him and said thank you, thinking I was doing him a favour. Later I saw him in happy conversation with two older folk, and I realised that he never needed my 'help'. And I saw that I missed the opportunity to just sink in and enjoy the music for myself.

A word that means a lot to me right now: 


I'd rather be whole than good. I'd rather be whole than good. I'd rather be whole than good.

When I don’t feel like my art matters I tell myself: 

My feeling insignificant matters. And if my feeling matters, I matter. If I matter, my art matters.

I knew I was an artist when: 

I still have no fucking idea what I am.

A rule I like to break: 

“Be careful.” 

A deep part of me cringes every time I hear those words cautioning a child. If something was actually truly dangerous, the words would be 'Stop!' or some kind of preventative action. But 'Be careful' just teaches fear and mistrust in one's own judgement. Don't be careful. Try it. Or don't. Our bodies tell us everything we need to know without being cautioned from the outside.

This is what the Secret Message Society means to me: 

It is an underground hub of questions, honesty and self-discovery.

It is a living, breathing work in constant motion, touching heart-cores here and there. It is a pull to go deeper, an anchor planting me exactly where I stand. It is a reminder that I am not alone with the poetry and the mystery and the thirst for truth and living.

Here is something I created that I want to share with you:

It is a poem.

the pull to make underpants
is loud and threatening
my sense of self

there is a time
and a place
for craft:

an imaginary castle
full of daisies and brocade
with no such thing as a tumbleweed
no crooked tables
no nails that could cut

i am not the one
who makes things with her hands
like this anymore

i am not the one
with the pleasant disposition
of a knitter on sunday afternoons
sipping from a vintage teacup

i am the tumbleweed one
with the crooked table
and nails that could cut

and the pull to make underpants
is loud and threatening

If we meet on the street we’ll know each other as undercover artists by:

What happens inside us when our eyes meet.

Hayley Sarah is discovering what means most to her and unravelling into her passion power existence a little further each day.

Each month I am featuring one Secret Message Society Member, both in the Zine and on my blog. I want you to see some of the creative ways these artists think, explore, live. When you open the Zine to the middle you will see an enticing double page spread designed by the centerfold artist. There will be a companion post here on my blog where I ask them a Lucky 13 questions. Want to join our grassroots movement of artists who are actively collecting, creating and inviting Secret Messages into their life?! You can subscribe here and/or get more details.