CBC website

My book just got added n the CBC website. If anyone want to leave a comment regarding my poetry here, it would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks, Allison

 

 

http://www.cbc.ca/books/sight-at-zero-1.4618370

http://www.cbc.ca/books/your-ultimate-canadian-poetry-list-68-poetry-collections-recommended-by-you-1.4613146

Only One

 

Only One

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What speaks of tenderness in the dead-blue

aftermath of human-induced horror?

When husband and wife are at odds,

seeing only the diseased boil of slaughter

then non-existence, when the pregnant woman

finds no seat in the midst of a

crowded day?

What speaks of holding on when the world is pale

with grief and parents mock their children’s love

with coldness and condescension?

What eye can see divine magnificence before

its doom? Or find greatness in what

society has ignored or condemned?

 

On the rafters a single flower is born.

I look to that single flower, like I look to spending

the afternoon with the ones who have endeared,

like the pulse and turn of my infant within

or a brief morning solitude –

                  open for interpretation.

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Copyright © 2004 by Allison Grayhurst

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First published titled “Only”  in “The Screech Owl” and “The Screech Owl” printed volume one

 

 

Doubt

 

Doubt

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Afterwards, I sit on the altar

of my withdrawal. I will not kneel, rendering

myself a thicker chair. My kind, like

fangs and hooves combined in one secret

creature. A city without history, emotions that

echo but do not deliver. My dress of skin: this place

cannot hold me any longer. Do you see the thumbprint

of the ocean – crater like – in the center of every Earth-rhythm?

Unable to fully believe in Earthy-things and the sun in its

frame of sky, marching on and over – so tired of this

tangle! ongoing. going on. For hopes of a caress, an instant

of locked eyes and the merging of souls. My voice –

weightless as a dream. Desire is a shell, the scent of

cedarwood saturating the pores, memories I haven’t

yet encountered. Sweeping is the goal.

And love stays, but how much

is a basket of exotic fruit, and how much more,

imagination?

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Copyright © 2010 by Allison Grayhurst

Walkways cover 2

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First published in “The Kitchen Poet”

I Find Clarity

 

I Find Clarity

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I find clarity

beside the open coffin

beside the one made of glass

with the see-through dogma

and beside the one of simple majesty.

I find myself free of the cumbersome hunger

for revival. I find myself just wanting

to be in the shadow, away from direct

light and the attitude of sentimentality and guilt.

I find my hands are strong and my legs

are capable of walking long distances.

I find that that is enough

to complete me.

I find food in someone else’s grocery cart

and my thirst is something I have learned to live with.

I find I am not so impressed with what used to

impress me. I am not striving for passion

at every turn, but I find passion at the lower levels

where rodents crawl and babies

muse at the ceiling.

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Copyright © 2008 by Allison Grayhurst

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BookCoverImage Allison GrayhurstTrial and Witness back cover final

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First published in “Jumping Blue Gods”

 

The Book

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The Book

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Inside, spending all my coins, rejoicing

on ephemeral longing, on a lustful inhale

for physical redemption.

 

Hidden in the pages, I am hidden

at four in the morning, bathing in perfection,

lifting into heights that obscure drudgery.

 

Thoughts are shapes that float as shadows,

hardly solid like butter left out of the fridge.

Cages unraveling and houses cleaned of cobwebs.

Between soft book covers freedom kisses explicitly,

candy-ices without embarrassment.

 

Hanging on hinges, on barely glanced-at walls,

I gather my vision in the grass, paint on the

bones of another’s life – beautiful bones and hallways

of many feet walking and swishing bathrobes.

In the book I can face forward and never fear rejection,

I can shower sensuously in warm rhythms,

tied to the stirring light of early summer.

Love between these diary covers is not just canvass

or thick hues that merge and make a middle, it is where I will

at last know another’s body as I know my own, be protected

from the torrential pawing pierce of middle-age loneliness.

 

Inside the book, you are under me like a bed of lavender bushes,

there are waves where once sunken skeletons rise like coral,

polished pure of their violent history.

 

Drowning in the book, imagining ants collecting,

synchronized on an apple core.

 

Bells in my head, footsteps rising, closer now,

you know me well. Inside the book, you know me better.

We are two trees – branches and roots, an interwoven crocheted

impressionistic portrait, staying through heavy storms.

 

Inside the book, we are creatures of greater sympathy.

You are like yarn, tied to my brush and hold, never in

the liquid valley of a distant boat, or obvious as a prickly,

rigid rope. I am mature, a woman with a ceiling to touch,

fifty feet of surrounding stillness, unfettered

from the expectations of my time and gender,

radiant, more, whole.

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Copyright © 2013 by Allison Grayhurst

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Currents - pastlife poems cover 4

BookCoverImage Allison GrayhurstTrial and Witness print back cover

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First published in “Wilderness House Literary Review”

 

 

Transfigured

 

Transfigured

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Each day I wear my grief

like metal mesh. I see you

as a spirit burdened to speak.

You try to comfort this field

of wounds. You tend the amputees

and bound the screaming with soft song.

But it is hard for you to stay,

to not let go completely into the light.

I let you go. I make this year my bridge.

Though my heart has ruptured and cannot heal,

and I am forever overcome with this sadness

of our love silenced by brutal, unnamable death,

I will build a new house, dive with both hands

into my yard until the evergreens grow.

I will contain you as more than memory –

in my harvest will bloom many sunflowers

of your great generosity. And your fiery blood

will sprout the roots and flesh of passion fruit.

The maple tree will grow large like you, protecting all

within its strong and tender shadow. And children

will be drawn to this yard, to play there amongst

the tall dramatic grass, and then sit still to watch

with wonder the many shades of sky, reflecting

the warmth of your paternal sun-setting colours.

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Copyright © 2000 by Allison Grayhurst

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First published in “Turk’s Head Review”, July 2014

 

 

Seeking the Balanced Degree

 

Seeking the Balanced Degree

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My mind is painted bright blue

like a pair of favourite jeans.

My belly is bread for thieves. Here

the crime awakens:

I drink from the eternal teat

of responsibility, from the lake

of suffering I must ignore

to breathe a steady rain, to scatter

my guilt amongst the weeds.

What happens when your all is nothing?

or when the truck runs you down seeing only

anonymous hairstrands and entrails?

Knowing love’s limitations,

like one knows the snows or the teeth

of an animal, is the tension that frees.

An enemy is at my table.

A horse is buried under American sands.

My heart is water:

It longs to quench the hot summer skin of sparrows.

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Copyright © 1997 by Allison Grayhurst

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First published in “B-Gina Review”