Two reviews of books: “Journey of the Awakening” and “The Many Lights of Eden”

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5.0 out of 5 stars
5.0 out of 5 stars Grayhurst is a great Canadian poet, June 9, 2013
By Tom Davis
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Amazon Verified Purchase
This review is from ‘Journey of the Awakening: The poetry of Allison Grayhurst’ 
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“Grayhurst is a great Canadian poet.
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All of Allison Grayhurst’s poetry
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is original, sometimes startling, and
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more often than not, powerful.
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Anyone who loves modern poetry
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that does not follow the common path
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will find Grayhurst complex, insightful,
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and as good a poet as anyone writing
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in the world today. This, and other Grayhurst 
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poetry volumes are highly, highly recommended,” 
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Tom Davispoet, novelist and educator.
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***
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5.0 out of 5 stars
5.0 out of 5 stars The Many Lights of Eden is a Must-Read!, June 14, 2013
By Eric M. Vogt
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Amazon Verified Purchase
This is an edited version of a review from ‘The Many Lights of Eden: The Poetry of Allison Grayhurst’
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“’The Many Lights of Eden’ is a journey: a journey

of the heart through youth, anguish, struggle,

spiritual awakening, grief, death, love, loss,

guilt, struggle, despair, hope, surrender, God,  

sensuality, imperfection, motherhood, aging,

the vanquishing of the devil, indeed, many devils,

the inevitable fall from perfection and the casting

off of old wineskins for a new one. Perhaps

speaking of this book as a chronicle of spiritual 

maturing would be more accurate, the realization

that there is spirituality within imperfection and that handmade temples

cannot hope to compete with the spiritual temples within each of us.

‘The Many Lights of Eden’ is a diamond. It is a beautiful collection

of insights. Allison Grayhurst’s thoughts and writings are a deep well.

Drink from it, for the water is clear and crisp. This collection is

a MUST-READ,” Eric M. Vogt, author of  Letters to Lara and 

Paths and Pools to Ponder

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Link to ‘Journey of the Awakening’ review:

http://www.amazon.com/Journey-Awakening-poetry-Allison-Grayhurst/product-reviews/1478189339/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

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Link to the full version review of ‘The Many Lights of Eden’

http://www.amazon.com/The-Many-Lights-Eden-Grayhurst/product-reviews/1478249153/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

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Review of paperback book “The River is Blind”

Recent Review of paperback book The River is Blind
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5.0 out of 5 stars The River is Blind is a Must-Read! May 4, 2013
Format:Paperback|Amazon Verified Purchase
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“I searched for words to adequately describe this collection of poetry by Allison Grayhurst. I realized quickly that my words cannot possibly hit the mark. So I will let her own words help me to say fully what I cannot.
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“Do not define me as a woman, or a wheel of rolling curves, with lipstick… Do not define me.”—from “Do not define me”.
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“Morning is beautiful. I am planting. Will you find me, honour the primrose on my veranda, maybe even snip one, take it to your table and dream of a voice other than your own?” —from “Find me”.
“Coming down, knowing now that everything known is blindness, deciphered speculation…we feed from the Earth and we get hungry. We have these telescopes, our catacombs of understanding, but we also have pilgrimage, crust, heartbeat, dying, soccer fields and song.” —from “Quagmire”.
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“I will run my breath across your eyelids, go to you, trace the edges of your hands, finding infinity in your torment… I will speak into your ear and you will step into my voice like stepping into a river.” —from “River”.
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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. THE RIVER IS BLIND is a must-read.”—Eric M. Vogt, Poet and Author
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Link to review:
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Review of poetry chapbook “The River is Blind”

ottawa poetry newsletter

COVERING OTTAWA WRITING, WRITERS & CONCERNS, ETC.

Reviewed by Ryan Pratt

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Recent Reads: Allison Grayhurst and Shannon Maguire

The River Is Blind by Allison Grayhurst
A Web Of Holes by Shannon Maguire
Both titles published by above/ground press, December 2012.
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“He came. He is what everyone needs
But the pavement is thick
the ground beneath is rich
saturated with worms,
moving
thick
with worm motion
moving
at worm speed.”
This stanza, snipped from the tail-end of “In the Thighs”, illustrates an existential curiosity that courses through Allison Grayhurst’s latest collection. We’ll get to the “He” part in a minute. But first, it’s Grayhurst’s physical constraints that comfort us: a box sitting at the top of the stairs, housecats in states of wakefulness and sleep, the “snails and moss” that preoccupy her. Indeed, The River Is Blind situates itself firmly in the familial but imbues those relationships and domestic touchstones with a disembodied calm. Ambition and disenchantment linger along the fences of Grayhurst’s property but she remains candidly in the present:  embracing “the comfort of sweaters and knitted socks” for “First Snow of Winter”, “the child sitting and staring and waiting for the coin” in “Wallpaper Stars”.
In lesser hands, muses such as these might’ve resulted in verses of weak-kneed contentedness. But Grayhurst’s voice remains one of detachment, webbing daily pleasures into greater meditations on love and God – the “He” that churns The River Is Blind’s family soil. Through spiritual lens, poems like “Everything Happens” and “Flies” counteract steadfast faith with insights on the material world, a separate world; a place where people grind flowers for honey. From “Flies”:
“What faith was plucked with the flowers
as all their little tongues reached out to pocket
the short-term scent?”
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Link to review: