Saturday, March 30, 2024


 —Poetry by Allison Grayhurst,
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
—Artwork Courtesy of Public Domain

In preference
the conditions
of terror
        Fly like a hen
across the field and back
to the barn
        Could there be another dream
worthy of oiling or is there just
inactivity everywhere causing
grid-lock, prolonging depression and time spent
under the rafters watching the game?
        I am somewhere identical to where I was
yet labouring under its own Academy—learning
the tricks, discerning the only essential tea
adequate to brew.
        There is the other side to this
and I will get there
without therapy or disintegration.
I will get there, intact, not a garment
soiled or torn.


       I could speak ugly
like a suicide weapon
inflating misery into
a ballooned and final action,
       I could cry like I was begging—
one leg broken, both legs
unusable, cry in my rejection,
plead pity like a half-crushed
       I could hide in my comfortable spot,
refusing to move or to attempt a peering-out,
my visible understanding.
       I could stop and stop forever
but I can’t because
love is stirring, waking
ready to come down the stairs
and share a language, a trust
that overpowers my sluggish mind-flow,
tells me
       I could just receive
and dedicate my purpose
to this sensation.


In the bloodline
like walls of lead
storing blockages like
clots and unlivable dilemmas,
the past is a monster
telling you what and what you don’t
deserve, beating on your brain
like on a dusty rug that will never
rid itself of mites no matter how hard
it is hit, will never release
its stains, can only be thrown out, over
the rail, into the dumpster.

In the vital present, uncompromised by thought
and expectations, nothing is determined,
no fortune teller to foretell what doesn’t yet exist.

Gravity is a false witness,
a trickster in the fold, folding this into that
into complex patterns void of significance,
except as patterns to follow, analyze, get lost in
as a desperate hope for control.

But the galaxy is not gravity,
is affectionate, unpredictable, purer
than understanding.
Bloodlines are straight lines
that nature abhors.

Ignore common enemies,
blow out the candles, blow,
arousing the birthing pulse
of a strange and glorious logic.


I waited like a face
before a mirror
waiting for expression,
waiting for an answer to carry me through
until mealtime.

I washed the clothes, did all things
necessary to keep clean and fertile,
to rejuvenate and knead out the numbness
infiltrating one limb and another.

I asked like I was instructed to ask,
grazing at every opportunity, in spite
of the lack.

I moved against the shadows so they
wouldn’t consume, making every effort
not to harden, to curtail
this stasis that will turn to sickness and
turn again to death.

I am waiting for a reaping
in this favourite place
I call my own, so I can build upon,
have a steady flow to satiate all thirst,
have breathing room to flesh out dreams—
some prayed for, some unexpected.


Orange peel
peel away my
heartless woes,
condemn again
the general rule
and allow the lotus
to bloom.

Remarkable day
that snatches away
the mystique from the mystics,
horseback rides to the summit
then descends at high velocity,
never losing ground or footing.

Power in my mind, I trust what I believe,
finally not fooled by the artificial
or displays of unquestioning confidence.
Finally my hope is tied to my faith.

I squeeze the fruit and smile in amazement
as I taste its intoxicating droplets,
let them pool in my mouth,
sensually reviving, loosen the grip
then drink.


Today’s LittleNip:

One should use common words to say uncommon things.

—Arthur Schopenhauer


Today we welcome Allison Grayhurst back to the Kitchen, coming down as she is from snowy Canada with her fine poems. Allison has been nominated for “Best of the Net” five times. She has over 1400 poems published in over 530 international journals, including translations of her work. She has 25 published books of poetry and 6 chapbooks. She is an ethical vegan and lives in Toronto with her family. She also sculpts, working with clay; see more of her work at Welcome back to the Kitchen, Allison, and don’t stay away so long next time!


 Allison Grayhurst

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