I tilt back and see above

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I tilt back and see above

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a tiered canopy

that rises great heights, separating pockets of sky

– some blue, some with clouds –

layers, textures swaying in gentle phrases,

opening the hilltop-cap of grief

more like pouring in

the truth of helplessness,

setting free depths unspoken,

domed in such beauty.

 

Perfection that cannot be matched

or misplaced as mediocre or somewhat flawed,

but is flawed, not one straight line

or obedience to symmetry,

all space taken up with its fecund flesh.

 

No cell or stem rotted without reason, rotted

because of regret or the weight of culture

or the ridged mind-set of past tradition, but all the past

contained within it.

 

The ancient trunk expanded equally in the roots

and the leaf currents, intertwined with other currents

to build a blanket, thick enough to feel protected,

mesmerized by the soft motion overgrowth bloom,

a place to anchor a home, release all weapons, comforted.

 

 

 

 © 2018 by Allison Grayhurst

amazon.com/author/allisongrayhurst

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Published in “Night Forest Journal Issue 1,” January 2019

 

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Published in “Synchronized Chaos” November 2018

https://synchchaos.com/synchronized-chaos-november-2018-the-things-we-carry/

http://synchchaos.com/15244-2/

 

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You can listen to the poem by clicking below:

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Animal Sanctuary – the song and the poem

 

River – songs from the poetry of Allison Grayhurst

https://dianebarbarash.bandcamp.com/

https://store.cdbaby.com/cd/dianebarbarash3

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/river-songs-from-the-poetry-of-allison-grayhurst/id1293420648

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0766X9LDJ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1507310524&sr=8-1&keywords=diane+barbarash

 

 

The Poem:

 

Animal Sanctuary

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He turns his hawk head

to view the shells of turtles streaking

the still-shroud of water in tanks

as blue as sky.

 

He lifts a leg and talons tensed,

pivots to defend against an enclosing shadow.

 

With whitish eyes and an impossible urge

to fly, he hops along his man-made perch toward

the cages where squirrels leap

from metal to wood, scattering like leaves

in unpredictable flurry.

 

He listens to the ducks’ lipless sounds.

 

Spring, he will never experience again, nor know

the scent of a pent-up life released like

sunflowers blooming, or the feel of the moon,

colder but more comforting than being touched.

 

He is without time or tribe,

and like fire, he haunts

by just being.

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Copyright © 1998 by Allison Grayhurst

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First published in “UC Review”, 1996/1997

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