Near Daybreak


Near Daybreak


   A flood of gentle morning,

grey from last night’s storm.

              The form of all I long for

leaps into a cloud.

              Branches fall, crows call

out to me, an old man

walks with a doorframe in his arms,

cursing the sunless sky.

              I sit in my morning chair, the faint

hum of distant cars soothes my belly

of its lonely ache. Balconies are

deserted, and even squirrels continue in sleep.


Who loves when no one is around, in this

embryonic stillness, this cloak of ash and humidity?


              God is in the churchbell waiting its first ring,

in the dreams of the dying, and in the chestnut tree unbloomed.

              God is in the tails of chasing cats,

the underwear on the line, and in

the pressure of time, as this morning lulls

its carefree, sabbath song.



Copyright © 1998 by Allison Grayhurst





First published in “Morphfrog, Issue 11 – sister publication of The Frogmore Papers” July 2015

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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.


Review of The Longing To Be: 

“The contents of Allison Grayhurst’s book The Longing To Be are both personal and universal and are described in such thematic and golden terms that one can see that a lot of thought has gone into each line. The poems are written mostly in free verse throughout, with both rhythm and soul weaved into them. For some poems, the layout seems experimental, and there is definitely a playfulness in the way that the words and verses fall onto the page. Others do conform to a “norm”, whatever that is. All are dramatic and thoughtful. These are layered poems with new horizons presented to the reader in every re-read. The effect is to keep things fresh with poems that constantly surprise in spite, and because of, the number of times being read. I thoroughly recommend The Longing To Be as a poetry book to study carefully and cherish far into the future,” poet Brian Shirra.



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