I have been taken on as your lover. I will not deny it
any longer, taken into a divine, subterranean refuge
where my lungs separate with a sharp divide,
squeezed apart like playdough, and that is not all
that has been conquered or dismembered.
I trust this burning bond, but I am hardly keeping pace,
letting all other responsibilities go, paying no mind
to the traffic or to the baby squirrel at my doorstep.
I have been tagged your concubine, marked now
with an irrefutable identification.
I am not in this body anymore,
not like I used to be. I am flowing in and out of atmospheres,
contained by dark matter into the surge of these succulent
prayers that claim the wavelength of my individuality.
It has always been – you on top of me, me over your back,
finally both of us abandoned to the pressure,
moving in sync, blasting out a ferocious harmony.
And the crows, on treetops, never letting me
out of their sight. You and them and dark wingspans
cloaking the shell of my brain, causing an explosive beat,
a ricocheting rhapsody – always just you and me – together,
retreating from time, gesticulating our revelations,
gyrating on beds, on cushions – scarves loose around
our necks, force-feeding each other, promising this and that,
and the sun. In my eyes, your sun, your legs beside mine
have become mine. It has never been any different –
I’ve been a fool to think it has – this tugging on my lead.
Love, so much love, our love, is sweet, murderous.
I am trying to understand but I don’t know how.
Tell me, I am listening. Expand everything
then crush it in tight, blindingly bright,
Copyright © 2012 by Allison Grayhurst
First published in “Whisper”, 2012
You can listen to the poem by clicking below:
“Allison Grayhurst intertwines a potent spirituality throughout her work so that each poem is not simply a statement or observation, but a revelation that demands the reader’s personal involvement. Grayhurst’s poetic genius is profound and evident. Her voice is uniquely authentic, undeniable in its dignified vulnerability as it is in its significance,” Kyp Harness, singer/songwriter, author.
“Allison Grayhurst’s poems are like cathedrals witnessing and articulating in unflinching graphic detail the gritty angst and grief of life, while taking it to rare clarity, calm and comfort. Grayhurst’s work is haunting, majestic and cleansing, often leaving one breathless in the wake of its intelligence, hope, faith and love amidst the muck of life. Many of Allison Grayhurst’s poems are simply masterpieces. Grayhurst’s poetry is a lighthouse of intelligent honour… indeed, intelligence rips through her work like white water,” Taylor Jane Green, Registered Spiritual Psychotherapist and author.
Book reviews of the River is Blind paperback:
“Throughout (The River is Blind), she (Allison Grayhurst) employs
reiterated tropes of swallowing and being consumed, spatial fullness
and emptiness, shut- in, caverns, chasms, cavities; angels, archangels,
blasphemy, psalms; satiation or starved. With a conceit of unrequited sex as “my desire”, nocturnal emissions, awakening in the morning, the poet lives at capacity, uninhibited, dancing,” Anne Burke, poet, regional representative for Alberta on the League of Canadian Poets’ Council, and chair of the Feminist Caucus.
“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. THE RIVER IS BLIND is a must-read,” Eric M. Vogt, poet and author.