like a seahorse floating forward

you are brittle and small. When you move

you barely touch the sandy ground.

        My eye to your reflection,

forging for fundamental truths.

Your skin to my aura, skimming the anointed flame.

        I wear you as a wig to fight off

prejudice. You lay over me like a shroud

made of woven sunlight and shade, made

to supply me with defining features

and leave an impression.

        You are like the freeway I fell onto

when I was barely grown, rolling over

to the side, watching the car I rode in

shrink into oblivion.

        I am a reptile in a drying-up waterhole,

cocooned in sludge, where you sniff me out,

expose my underbelly and devour.

        Pocket knives and crushed branches,

I owe my secrets to only you.

        Lap me into your watery mouth,

tongue-swirl me across your taste buds

unless I die, evolve, unrecognizable, and you

fairy-tale pretty, ride away on a mild tide, saying

it is over.



Copyright  © 2012 by Allison Grayhurst

BookCoverPreview (3)

Surrogate Dharma chapbook 1


First published in “Blast Furnace”

Blast Furnace 3Blast Furnace 1Blast Furnace 2


You can listen to the poem by clicking below:


“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,”  Eric M. Vogt, poet and author.

“Grayhurst is a great Canadian poet. All of Allison Grayhurst’s poetry is original, sometimes startling, and more often than not, powerful. Anyone who loves modern poetry that does not follow the common path will find Grayhurst complex, insightful, and as good a poet as anyone writing in the world today. Grayhurst’s poetry volumes are highly, highly recommended,” Tom Davis, poet, novelist and educator.

What A Dream Can Tell


What A Dream Can Tell



Last night I held a muse

under the sheets.


For an hour I waited

like a hunter after a prized prey.


He was beside me, tucked inside

his male shell.


He would not touch my breast

or back. I waited between


war & sleep for his shadow

to ignite. In my mind there were


archways made of silver & thorns,

& horses with pumped-up shoulders


racing aimlessly to & fro.

I looked for him among the pastures wild


& in the oceans of living octopi. I looked

behind a sniveling child, into the eyes


of a great afternoon. I held my muse but

for a blind hour. I could not keep him.


I could not love with all my heart.



Copyright © 1995 by Allison Grayhurst


For Every Rain Cover 5


First published in “Dalhousie Review, Volume 71, Issue 4”, 1991/1992



Dalhousie 1

Dalhousie 2



You can listen to the poem by clicking below:


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.