I will sink your boat and struggle
with your scaly arms.
I will not let your hot sea swallow me
or let the light I earned from the birds
be extinguished in the deadness of your embrace.
One time, I was gentle with myself.
I took the remedy and widened my path.
Then you, with your ashen red-soul minions, ripped
the blood from my throat and I have been lying
here ever since, a victim – not the woman
I was made. I am not fragile, but I am of the sun
and of the darkness and I know the pure joy
of home. I cast you from my heart,
you who stole my fire, left me
weak-kneed and dependent upon an outer outcome.
Guide me down the shaft of this axle,
let my strength rise, dependent on only you.
I am not a single voice, ghostly in the darkness. I am
your servant – let me serve you – release me
from this fatalism, this consuming toxic tar.
Stand by my window, I will fight to save myself –
it will be just you and me at the bottom
of this grave and the demons I allowed in
and allowed to conquer.
At the bottom of this grave, I will cling to you.
Raise me up. I promise, my part will be played –
I won’t let go.
Copyright © 2006 by Allison Grayhurst
First published in “Medusa’s Kitchen” August 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.