A thank-you note
I liked you for your love
of the little creatures, for the wild,
unsavoury animals that others
have no use for – like rats, tortoises
and cats that are blind. I liked you
for the wound you kept a mystery –
something about your father and a
despair that set you apart from the rest
of the living. I liked our full-blown connection
that seemed to conquer time and mistrust and
prepare for us a feast of sisterly ways.
For a year we held close.
In that car ride through
the farmlands, once I feared you might stop and stab me
under that canopy of stars and darkness. Because
there was something terrifying about you –
something hurt and distorted
by a tremendous overload.
One day you stopped calling,
stopped speaking about poetry,
your dog and your love-affairs
gone wrong. Months later you wrote me a letter,
explaining the days that kept you from me –
days of being unable to eat, get dressed
or even call on the phone. For me, it was
too late. Too much so soon and then, nothing.
Like a betrayal I could never get used to,
like a friendship I would always be wondering
when it would vanish.
Only later did I learn your last name.
Copyright © 2006 by Allison Grayhurst
First published in “Dali’s Lovechild Issue 7” April 2015
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.