Cedar wood, dark spaces under wood
where beetles mate then hide their own. There,
you smile, your forehead groomed
of false expression. I study you like my one-chance solution,
or steps to take to shield me from this penetrating boredom
that slips unwanted under my heavy housecoat.
Narwhales shaped like epigrams, like the undecipherable
complexities in the creases of your folded hands.
You are taut as a sail in a strong wind, capable of
unmatched speed, stretched, though not even
close to ripping.
If you were a tree, 100 years and on, pulling sunlight
from its throne, shimmering green, a stronger brilliance
than a vault brimming with polished gold,
still you could not be better than what you are –
sitting close to the corner, on the couch,
unwashed hair and an irritated mouth,
reluctantly waking into the noon-light, drinking coffee,
salted, sometimes sorrowful, mostly spring-time budding –
a supplier of oxygen, maker of songs received
as storm-sturdy harbours, worlds to land on,
dig or nest or claim a hole, many branches,
many escape routes, many life-saving homes.
.Copyright © 2012 by Allison Grayhurst
First published in “Cartagena Journal Issue 3”
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.