To Walk Without Shape Or Sound


To Walk Without Shape or Sound


That I cling to this cold sleep,

show little effort to be removed . . .

In nightmares of symbols grey and mortal,

fears translate all my hope

into an impatient temper, and I stand,

arms folded, with threatening glances

turned toward the window.

That I will not move from this unhappy

bondage, give the world the wave it deserves and

rejoice, full force in my non-belonging . . .

That I lay with false sorrow, my numbing wounds

displayed like so many movies, consuming

all thought and vision . . .

Drowning in unutterable loneliness, I

cannot pray this bad taste off my tongue,

cannot claim my home inside the lightning jaws.

I have seen the light abandoned for the hangnail’s

torment. I have seen this darkness, dug my head deep

in its flaming mud.


But this is nowhere:


There is only

the circle, the spiral journey


only to be like the animals and angels,


to the weather’s foothold.



Copyright © 1997 by Allison Grayhurst



First published in “Poetry Nottingham International”, 1996

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“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.

Reviews of  ‘Journey of the Awakening‘:
“Journey of the Awakening is the first book of poetry that I have read of Allison Grayhurst. While reading it began to sound familiar, the comment to myself was “She is as good as Sylvia Plath”. When I finished the book I read comments from others who referred to her as “In the style of Sylvia Plath”; Ms Plath, one of my favorite poets had no match until Ms Grayhurst’s work. Congratulations to her on her achievements, I am already a ‘fan’, the love of her work will continue to grow,” Ann Johnson-Murphree, poet and author.
“Grayhurst is a great Canadian poet. All of Allison Grayhurst’s poetry is original, sometimes startling, and more often than not, powerful. Anyone who loves modern poetry that does not follow the common path will find Grayhurst complex, insightful, and as good a poet as anyone writing in the world today. This, and other Grayhurst poetry volumes are highly, highly recommended,” Tom Davis, poet, novelist and educator.

3 responses to “To Walk Without Shape Or Sound

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