Lumin

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Lumin

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One of the greatest souls I ever met

was in the body of a rat.

She was pure and noble, dissolved

in gentle love, a smooth essence, easy

to dive into.

      Her name was Lumin- named by my son

after the Shaolin clan virtue Focus.

In truth, it may sound crazy, something many

would smirk at or mock – but here she was –

holding an infinity of tenderness in her rat eyes,

every day, every night with her rat toes, her Dumbo ears

and her rat tail.

      She had a brain tumour and lived a year with it –

recovering five times from the brink of death, holding space

in the chair, giving up her seat on the throne to stay with us.

Every night for hours we stayed together, often

just looking into each other’s eyes.

      No one could know. I could have never guessed

that I would love a rat this much,

that such an untroubled expansive heart

could dwell in one so small, so shunned and disrespected.

      She loved and was able to receive love

like a child with her mother.

She saved my son during two years of teenage despair.

That was her music. There was nothing hard in her, nothing

that did not soften into joy- even when she was ill.

When she died

 

five minutes she struggled, panicked, lunging for breath.

My hands went on her. I prayed for God

to intervene with mercy.

For five more minutes she stopped lunging, was at ease,

gasping slightly, then stopped gasping

and the light radiated through and around her body,

and her breath and the beating of her chest stopped. Now

she is at rest, delighting fully in the wave.

 

      One of the greatest friends I have ever had was a rat.

And I have and have lost many friends in many body forms –

she was a shrine of layered clarity and kindness. She

was a great being, a resting point in God’s creation.

      One of the greatest souls I have ever met

was in the body of a rat.

 

Please listen. please understand. Holy. Holy. Holy halleluiah.

We are all joined.

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 © 2018 by Allison Grayhurst

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Published in “Outlaw Poetry” July 2018

https://outlawpoetry.com/2018/lumin-by-allison-grayhurst/

https://outlawpoetry.com/category/allison-grayhurst/

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You can listen to the poem by clicking below:

 

 

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

3005

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