Wednesday, May 1, 2024



Bread & Fruit


Under the deed

the golden intention is hidden

willing to conquer

made-up realities,

fantasies drooling into the brain.

I asked for hope and was given

great love. Although exhausted

I can still reply authentic,

even with enthusiasm.

Honour is pronounced as natural integrity.

Feasting on the yolk, a time when

childishness is reduced to non-consideration,

and even gone are aggressive jealousies and

the rules of the perpetually damned.


Now you are in the sun

like in a dream you have dreamt of for so long.

Strong and capable, the power of liberty

blazing through your pours, into

the rivers and into the seas



Cut The Reins

(Romulus over Numa)


Before equality

was a loophole-word

that meant each-to-their-own,

there were possibilities, retaliation,

convictions that gnawed crazed in the gut,

not tended to as complex calculations.

Blood was required for those who walked

bare-footed, in chains. Smiles were overlooked

because every movement forward could be attacked

and the attackers were ruthless,

were the upper-cast-surveyors, pursing their lips

for future indulgences and the grand cutting-down.

Before there was war then there was religion,

rituals to replace the war with locked-in-duty

and unchallengeable hierarchy.

The philosopher king was a king

of masterful manipulation.

With him, peace reigned

as long as the chairs started with

were the chairs stayed with,

each accepting their given seat no matter

its disconnection from dignity or its captivity.


Better the clarity of servitude than

to decorate the death of freedom

with a bribe, false expectation

and regulated civility.

Better the sibling-slayer, bared-tooth ruler

over the priest. Better the glutton

owning his transgressions

over the secret-eater, pretending

compassion with charity, and devotion

with upholding traditions,

basing wisdom on semantics, burying alive

the disobedient sex-alive misfits in a room

with a soft bed, a cup of water and an obedience to shame,

strong enough that they go quietly, underground,

accepted enough that the perpetrators feel justified,

fully at ease, appeased from guilt

by a sanctified brutality.


That End


That end was a sound,

a sharp breeze that cracked

the funeral casket.

What love could happen, happened

then expanded thick and buttery

like a pleasant dream stirring

in the early morning hours.

I held your hand and you glittered

with a beautiful depth fully your own.

That end was employment

into a purposeful labour, meaningfulness

hitting hard and sideways.


Your hands are an intellectual’s, tender

as they have always been.

The concrete blockade is past us.

The foul scent repeating-shame has gone away,

replaced with an uplifting aroma.


We belong to each other, on the edge

of this unexperienced ecstasy, starting to bud,

flesh-out, claim our place on the stem -

fed from the anchored richness below and from

the pure colouring-sun, witnessing.


Zen Walk


Release the washing

and just set sail.


Born from hurt and from frustration,

the dirt upon you will never come clean.

The battle within the game

will pay out the same - body parts

will deplete then start to pile.


Make an impression outside the circle,

foiling the laws that hold you in place,

declaring your place on the mound.


None of it is real

if you don’t want it to be.

Even death will not free you from

the heavy grip, not from the debt accumulating.

Only an angel’s vision, the one Jesus revealed,

only setting sail, releasing your assignment

will release you.


Simply love and let go

of expectation. Master

waiting, listening, waiting.


The animals know this -

taking, giving,


void of gratitude

immune to resentment.




Tear apart tomorrows’ boundaries

and be identical to water,

taking your cue for movement from the wind.

The same way self-respect is chiselled at

by compromise, poverty seduces the mind into despair.

Let it heat up. purify and find a harmony

unusual in its longing and continuance.

I loved you but now I have no urgency or desire.

You are yes and also no.

I can’t say why I can’t hear your music or live

advancing a future beneficial to the eternal stream

and to myself personally.

I don’t know why futility clings

to me like a barnacle, latching on, lingering

one day to the next, crusting my skin


I have no solution to eradicate this quagmire

or wash myself of this fiction and allow your reality

to take hold.

The same way life has lost all its questions,

colours get frayed, braided as one into

a dull flat grey.

I see only flaws and the inevitable fate

of those flaws.

I cannot lift myself or script

a worthy chapter.


Tear this apart and take me under,

to witness life bulbous, translucent and

so far removed from my bony heavy mass.

I cannot labour here another day,

brooding in defeat.

I cannot love you and I need help

to love you again, feel my dismemberment

dwarfed, unequalled

by your mercy.




ALLISON GRAYHURST 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; Collaborating with Allison Grayhurst on the lyrics, Vancouver-based singer/songwriter/musician Diane Barbarash has transformed eight of Allison Grayhurst’s poems into songs, creating a full album entitled River – Songs from the poetry of Allison Grayhurst, released 2017. Some of the places her work has appeared in include Parabola (Alone & Together print issue summer 2012); SUFI Journal (Featured Poet in Issue #95, Sacred Space); Elephant Journal; Literary Orphans; Blue Fifth Review; The American Aesthetic; The Brooklyn Voice; Five2One; Agave Magazine; JuxtaProse Literary Magazine, Drunk Monkeys; Now Then Manchester; South Florida Arts Journal; Gris-Gris; Buddhist Poetry Review; The Muse – An International Journal of Poetry, Storm Cellar, morphrog (sister publication of Frogmore Papers); New Binary Press Anthology; Straylight Literary Magazine (print); Chicago Record Magazine, The Milo Review; Foliate Oak Literary Magazine; The Antigonish Review; Dalhousie Review; The New Quarterly; Wascana Review; Poetry Nottingham International; The Cape Rock; Ayris; Journal of Contemporary Anglo-Scandinavian Poetry (now called The Journal); The Toronto Quarterly; Existere; Fogged Clarity, Boston Poetry Magazine; Decanto; White Wall Review. 

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