I reached across the riddle-barrier,

shaved my head and walked through the door.

I took my clothes out of the closet

and burned them,

I watched the light dim all around

and walked over a cliff.


I did this without a choice, only a decision

to embrace a movement forward.

I was commanded to do this, and I consented,

not without struggle and self-loathing,

not without fear and a sense of deep failure.


Now I am falling, I am in the air, eagle-spread,

a sharp pain in my side and the wind whistling

its rapture.

Everything people do

is bound to kill them eventually.

Take dancing or bricklaying or being a mother.


I am still falling, I have not landed

in someone’s arms nor on the sharp rocky bottom.

The pain remains, so does the wonder,

as I fall, falling,



Copyright © 2020 by Allison Grayhurst




First published in “Madness Muse Press” August 2020

Three Poems by Allison Grayhurst



You can listen to the poem by clicking below:

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