The splendid vision

was announced then

denounced and the whole

inspiring fire fizzled invisible.


For decades, possessed,

but still able to protect the ones I love.

Yesterday and months before, the possession

lost its rule, the blood rage coiled inside of me cooled

but this open space created has taken away

my fight with it, and every ounce of security.


Concentrating on this stand-by whiff of hope,

hope as the thing practiced and opposite to struggling,

though not enough to fill my lungs with faith, not enough

to inhale a good breath or breathe at ease

before sleep.


I don’t even know my name

anymore – my demons were never slain,

they just dissipated, taken by a ghostly victory

that I cannot claim as my own courage-doing

or as a song.


It is good that they are gone

but what they gave (food for survival)

is gone with them and I cannot see a way

forward, cannot see any secret that will feed this house

and stabilize it so I can live, clean the floor

and not wonder how long I can step here, step here

and hold the ones I love in safety.


The race is done though I never reached

the finish line. I was just plucked from the track

onto a sideroad without a knapsack or a spoon.

I can blow right through my fingers.

I can curl my toes but I cannot take a step,

not like this, deserted, helpless

at this bardo crossing.




Copyright © 2023 by Allison Grayhurst

“The poems included in Allison Grayhurst’s poetry collection Running, lightwave riding reveal an impressive artistic perfection and creative energy. The poems are full of lyrical force and show freshness of style. No doubt, this is a significant work. The poems have great power of observation and originality of imagination,” Dr. Karunesh Kumar Agarwal publisher



First published in “Kavya Kishor” March 2023



You can listen to the poem by clicking below:



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