In the throat like a toothpick

energy sticks and pokes and breaks

capillaries. It is not dirt on the floor

or a week of getting through but it

has turned into a lifestyle of spiritual starvation –

not a moment to read, write, record and delve into

things that change me and hold me to this world.

I cannot do what I used to – even breadcrumbs

have dried into dust and I feel like a new creature

born from anxiety – always at the upper level, never

returning to the core. I feel buried under snow

ready to just fade and fight no more.

I crave for the lips of God.

I am torn asunder like a dried leaf

under a sharp tooth-comb. I am thirsty, still

a poet.



Copyright © 2004 by Allison Grayhurst



First published in “Nebo: A Literary Journal, Volume 33, No. 1”

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You can listen to the poems my 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.



3 responses to “Desperation/Affirmation

  1. This poem articulates the way I often feel, too. I’ve just come out of a short New Year’s Retreat but feel that I’ve just scraped the surface of things, perhaps approached the “core” but am already back into the thick of things driven by something more like anxiety, survival, than other more simpler things. But hopefully this time of retreat (of core time) will find its way into these outer realms as I live my life! I enjoyed this poem. Still a poet…

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