Lost Your Clown

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Lost Your Clown

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An applauding audience

rat dung on the carpet

yes, remember

the perfumed summer

cold pennies

we would lay on the railroad tracks

and my necklace

with one jewelled eye

your clothing of cinnamon colour

mornings of breathing

with the lights left on

surviving the shrilling gull’s song

breathing

wax, humidity, hand-prints on the wall.

From you a hot glow

swelled in your snare

tiny tedious nights

in your asylum of approvals

and secret judgements

I would squirm

dry

thirsty

when you’d come home

pockets full of food and false friendship

I would rock and weep

near the tape recorder

stabbing sorrow

in my isolated aquarium

tossing pebbles to the ceiling

watch them hit

and laugh out loud

 

I want you to know

your theatre is bare

nobody lingers for you

gifted pretender

of deliverance.

 

Take flight

take your guru condescending cold

it’s getting easier to be alive.

 

 

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Copyright © 1989 by Allison Grayhurst

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Joshua’s Shoulder was published  in 1989 by The Plowman, written by Allison Grayhurst under the pseudonym of Jocelyn Kain.

Joshua's shoulderimg157

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Published in “The Peregrine Muse” April 2018

https://sites.google.com/site/theperegrinemuseii/home/grayhurst

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First published in “The Plowman: A Journal of International Poetry” 1989

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You can listen to this poem by clicking below:

 

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Immortal Burn

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Immortal Burn

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The evening falls

I crawl on my belly through sewers

old passions, fatal hopes

bellow, discharge

into my mind

 

Your smile is like a sickness

I can’t shake off

Your body

a beating obsession

infesting my pores

 

The last hour

the last kiss

burns immortal

like thunderstorm

fastened to my existence.

 

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Copyright © 1989 by Allison Grayhurst

amazon.com/author/allisongrayhurst

.

Joshua’s Shoulder was published  in 1989 by The Plowman, written by Allison Grayhurst under the pseudonym of Jocelyn Kain.

Joshua's shoulderimg157

.

Published in “The Peregrine Muse” April 2018

https://sites.google.com/site/theperegrinemuseii/home/grayhurst

.

 

First published in “The Plowman: A Journal of International Poetry” 1989

.

You can listen to this poem by clicking below:

 

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Walls

Walls

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I prefer the window

gardens made of stone

a sleep-filled afternoon

where the whole of a frozen pond

is cupped in my palm.

When I was younger

I skipped stones on the river

lived, lurked

dazed, dazzled

with an honest imagination

and cool peace

Now, my socks are filthy

lovers have belittled intimacy

and the sun is sullen

painted as a shadow.

 

The planet is yawning

over worn with rot

moral inconsistencies

litter the sidewalks

nobody wears

the wind on the backs

anymore

 

Walls are mine

to devour

spit up

then build again.

 

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Copyright © 1989 by Allison Grayhurst

amazon.com/author/allisongrayhurst

.

Joshua’s Shoulder was published  in 1989 by The Plowman, written by Allison Grayhurst under the pseudonym of Jocelyn Kain.

Joshua's shoulderimg157

.

Published in “The Peregrine Muse” April 2018

https://sites.google.com/site/theperegrinemuseii/home/grayhurst

.

 

First published in “The Plowman: A Journal of International Poetry” 1989

.

You can listen to this poem by clicking below:

 

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The Jester and the Monk

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The Jester and the Monk

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The jester and the monk went walking

The winter moon

hung like a skull above their heads

Two before midnight

prayed by the river

laughed in the apple orchards

holding hands

they circled a forest of dreams

 

The jester poked a tongue at the sky

the monk dripped tears on the earth

nailed to absurdity

locked in serious sainthood

campfire burned

children linked arms

close to their love

 

If not for the living thirst

If not for the agonized fascination

and the ignited chill

no blue bird would they have betrayed

no house would they have entered

like wings

flapping in an undecided wind.

 

A thousand hours

counting many dawns,

nights of humour and holiness

Anyone could feel the connection

resting in their smiles

Anyone would have swam an Artic sea

to soothe the burn

blistering the strength of their hold.

 

What they wanted

neither dared to understand

only a bridge

mouthfuls of truth

handfuls of lies

drove them together

inseparable.

 

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Copyright © 1989 by Allison Grayhurst

amazon.com/author/allisongrayhurst

.

Joshua’s Shoulder was published  in 1989 by The Plowman, written by Allison Grayhurst under the pseudonym of Jocelyn Kain.

Joshua's shoulderimg157

.

Published in “The Peregrine Muse” April 2018

https://sites.google.com/site/theperegrinemuseii/home/grayhurst

.

 

First published in “The Plowman: A Journal of International Poetry” 1989

.

You can listen to this poem by clicking below:

 

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Foothold

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Foothold

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I think midnight

is a future swelling

ready for wreckage

then prayer, then sun

I think the animals

have voices,

many, too motionless to hear

A backbone, crushed

a starfish, exploding

good emotion squandered

out of fear of failure –

all of this exist

in union with the empty eve

 

Old people understand

the brave business of life

some, they have conquered competition

cold, ceasing to cry

some, they feel like fugitives

nearing the boundaries of death

shaking like a season

that has lost its beginning

a harvest

ill, unused

 

I dream of footholds

I dream deliberate

draining meaning

out of every moment

I dream of souls patterned

like constellations

 

In the snow

a flame was born

Darkness is pointless

lacking the owl’s eyes

 

I used to house the harrowing hooligans

This way, I have restored my temple

burying my body below sand,

joining the desert

devoted.

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Copyright © 1989 by Allison Grayhurst

amazon.com/author/allisongrayhurst

.

Joshua’s Shoulder was published  in 1989 by The Plowman, written by Allison Grayhurst under the pseudonym of Jocelyn Kain.

Joshua's shoulderimg157

.

Published in the “Peregrine Muse” April 2018

https://sites.google.com/site/theperegrinemuseii/home/grayhurst

.

 

First published in “The Plowman: A Journal of International Poetry” 1989

.

You can listen to this poem by clicking below:

.

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Joshua’s Shoulder

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Joshua’s Shoulder

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The herd was on a hill

Soldiers were marching

Young people were below, learning

how to grow up correctly.

I touch a cloud with my tongue,

cried on Joshua’s shoulder

        Will they every be resurrected?

        Will the horn blow,

        beat heaven into every heart?

        I had a dream Joshua,

        we were on a clear river

        sailing on a gigantic leaf

        we were more than happy

        never once striving for shore.

Joshua stretched out an arm

a finger

drew a circle encasing us

        My love,

        I would break in a minute

        if not for your soul

        pressed so close to mine

        Choose your smiles well

        not everyone understands laughter

        like we do.

The rocks dislodged from mountains

covering graveyards.

An old woman was reciting her name

in front of a mirror, a child

she once knew, remembered

herself to be

Dead fish lay on the beach,

their eyes, like marbles

glowed, all suffering

traceless

as if locked inside

a wisdom

no human could unmask.

I lifted my hands

to give thanks to the birds,

leaned on Joshua’s shoulder

and whispered

        Joshua

        The flowers are stones

        and the stones are stars

Joshua nodded

took my hand

and changed direction, tears

leaving his strong eyes.

 

 

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Copyright © 1989 by Allison Grayhurst

amazon.com/author/allisongrayhurst

.

Joshua’s Shoulder was published  in 1989 by The Plowman, written by Allison Grayhurst under the pseudonym of Jocelyn Kain.

Joshua's shoulderimg157

.

Published in the “Peregrine Muse” April 2018

https://sites.google.com/site/theperegrinemuseii/home/grayhurst

.

 

First published in “The Plowman: A Journal of International Poetry” 1989

.

You can listen to this poem by clicking below:

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When He Left You

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When He Left You

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If ever a dead man

blew kisses from the grave

it is now   now that the leaves

wilt, that you close the cupboard doors

and answer with silence

the tiny husk of sweetness swallowed.

A day by the hill pulsing with thirst.

The mirror hanging. You look, crying out.

But always you rock

decomposing, fake,

always a lunar night in your navel

tunnelling deep into your pit.

By chance you knife the python,

shoot bullets into the metal floor

desperate for escape,

desperate for the dream to love you

the way you, with your blood and poetry

love, love.

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Copyright © 1989 by Allison Grayhurst

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Joshua’s Shoulder was published  in 1989 by The Plowman, written by Allison Grayhurst under the pseudonym of Jocelyn Kain.

Joshua's shoulderimg157

img063

Fire and more cover - Copy

amazon.com/author/allisongrayhurst

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First published in “JVC Poetry Newsletter Volume 1, Number 7” March 1990

Published under the pseudonym “Jocelyn Kain” aka Allison Grayhurst

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You can listen to the poem by clicking below:

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Somewhere Falling has a richness of imagery and an intensity of emotion rare in contemporary poetry. Drawn in sharp outlines of light and darkness, and rich shades of colour, with a deep sense of loss and longing and the possibility of salvation, this is an unusual book by a gifted young poet. Grayhurst’s voice is one to which we should continue to pay attention.” — Maggie Helwig, author of Apocalypse Jazz and Eating Glass.

“Responsibility and passion don’t often go together, especially in the work of a young poet. Allison Grayhurst combines them in audacious ways. Somewhere Falling is a grave, yet sensuous book.” – Mark Abley, author of Glasburyon and Blue Sand, Blue Moon.

“Biting into the clouds and bones of desire and devotion, love and grief, Allison Grayhurst basks the reader, with breathtaking eloquence, in an elixir of words. Like lace, the elegance is revealed by what isn’t said. This is stunning poetry.” – Angela Hryniuk, author of no visual scars.

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