Where are you? I’ve been calling
and waiting, soiled and famished, anticipating your return,
circled by predatory chains. There are things
we need to talk about. Are you
here, or just a synchronized inspiration, energy
as icing for one day? It is not enough.
I need you here, not galactic but like a man
before his wedding hour, needing me too,
focused entirely on my fulfilment. Where are you?
In the sparrow-droppings? In the kitten’s fear?
I cannot go forward so close to the lurking eyes
of mire and sacrificial doom.
Why are you leaving me blindfolded,
tremours and hard lumps invading my body,
aching against the sky for you,
on my knees, in many ways excavated, sagging without
mettle or substance? Where are you -
in the sideboard? The baseboard?
Compel my breath into freedom,
sing loud in my left ear, love me
like a solid spike, but weightless in its consequences.
I drive the rattle. The world is huge and
I am capsizing, eaten by its ignorance and filthy demands.
Where are you? Did you fly away?
Can you be my gravy, not dry and vague
as a passing half-hearted smile?
Can you not pay for my funeral and be done with the obituary,
sending me into the afterlife, a new life
of baby days and infant trust?
Where do I hurt? For you, everywhere. It is impossible
to escape, impossible to cross my legs, fold my arms.
Tender or with a shovel pounding,
break through this cobwebbed room,
give me a background I can play with, a full dish, delight
in the splintered wood.
Copyright © 2012 by Allison Grayhurst
First published in “The Brooklyn Voice”
You can listen to the poem by clicking below:
“Allison’s poetic prose is insightful, enwrapping, illuminating and brutally truthful. It probes the nature of the human spirit, relationships, spirituality and God. It is sung as the clearest song is sung within a cathedral by choir. It is whispered as faintly as a heartbroken goodbye. It is alive with the life of a thousand birds in flight within the first glint of morning sun. It is as solemn as the sad-sung ballad of a noble death. Read at your peril. You will never look at this world in quite the same way again. Your eye will instinctively search the sky for eagles and scan the dark earth for the slightest movement of smallest ant, your heart will reach for tall mountains, bathe in the most intimate of passions and in the grain and grit of our earth. Such is Allison Grayhurst. Such is her poetry,” Eric M. Vogt, poet and author.