like a seahorse floating forward
you are brittle and small. When you move
you barely touch the sandy ground.
My eye to your reflection,
forging for fundamental truths.
Your skin to my aura, skimming the anointed flame.
I wear you as a wig to fight off
prejudice. You lay over me like a shroud
made of woven sunlight and shade, made
to supply me with defining features
and leave an impression.
You are like the freeway I fell onto
when I was barely grown, rolling over
to the side, watching the car I rode in
shrink into oblivion.
I am a reptile in a drying-up waterhole,
cocooned in sludge, where you sniff me out,
expose my underbelly and devour.
Pocket knives and crushed branches,
I owe my secrets to only you.
Lap me into your watery mouth,
tongue-swirl me across your taste buds
unless I die, evolve, unrecognizable, and you
fairy-tale pretty, ride away on a mild tide, saying
it is over.
Copyright © 2012 by Allison Grayhurst
First published in “Blast Furnace”, 2013
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.