September 4, 2015 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION




Allison Grayhurst



What I Shine For



Smile like a caterpillar

curled in the light

and then plucked into bird food

by an unforeseen flight.

Smile under siege

for all the dreams owned and lost

and re-owned as an unrelinguishable part.

Smile and deal with what is crushed

and with what is not

but instead has sprouted a

bold beginning – a tree of strange scent.

Smile but never let it fully out

because the days spin weary

and the white has faded from the walls.

Smile, confined like a pearl where

it is set.

Smile and accept yourself

forever hanging

from this thin translucent









Another Level




Buzz from the wind cloud,

over the cable lines

and the heads of barn owls.

Shadows are bleeding through the brick

until they seep indoors, pressing in on the furniture.

I know the pattern on the ceiling,

I have witnessed this road so many times

before – to be twisted and toyed with

until finally broken – freed

of the false trap,

the inauthentic hold that holds me

in its manic, brutal indifference

like a fly in a jar looking for air-holes.

Thank you for that jar – to remind

me of the difference between atmospheres –

between common kindness and the evil like pinpricks

that sticks absentmindedly in the cavity of the throat.

Thank you for showing me the carelessness of those fixed

on this world and the generosity of others

that numbs my day-to-day pain

until I am admonished, awakened and ready to soar.

From out of the cave we decide

and then are divided. I choose you.

Make me good and brave – enough

to outshine this phyllo-dough hell.









Allison Grayhurst

Allison Grayhurst is a member of the League of Canadian Poets. She has over 675 poems published in more than 315 international journals and anthologies. Her book Somewhere Falling was published by Beach Holme Publishers in 1995. Since then she has published eleven other books of poetry and six collections with Edge Unlimited Publishing. Prior to the publication of Somewhere Falling she had a poetry book published, Common Dream, and four chapbooks published by The Plowman. Her poetry chapbook The River is Blind was published by Ottawa publisher above/ground press in December 2012. In 2014 her chapbook Surrogate Dharma was published by Kind of a Hurricane Press, Barometric Pressures Author Series. More recently, she has a chapbook Currents pending publication this Fall with Pink.Girl.Ink. Press. She is a vegan, and lives in Toronto with her family. She also sculpts, working with clay; www.allisongrayhurst.com

1 Comment

  1. Susan September 04, at 09:00

    Yes, thank you for the Jar and the reminder. And thank you for the thread. Two poems that enter the human condition.


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