Hooked-poem by Allison Grayhurst

  Lips pulsing, foreheadenduring – pound, poundin the nightmare night –high winds, blazing stormand thinking “all alone!”Centre of a circle, surrounded byloved oneswho have turned their backs –poverty shame, fed-up with helping.And there it is, the rabbitscreamingin a leg-hold trap, compressed,bones snapped.There is this place of Earth calledhome, survivaland self-preservation paramount. Nearingnowthe rotted root, my hands areslashed,fingers twisted “Do not land!” thevoice says,pulsing as I sleep, denying allpleas for mercy. My father would have saved me, buthe is dead,died long ago, too young of too bigand too brokena heart. My father would havehelped me with lovein his eyes, growing old would nothave blocked his kindness. The streets all go south to thelake and drownin freezing polluted waters. I go southwith them,passing beach houses, cafes I oncesat at.I am done here, let me be done, Icannot carry this inheritance.I cannot lift my foot another step.I have one true-heart companion andwe havebeen shunned together – our home,our childrentaken from us to feed the snappingjaw.Dreams made of thin glass, rosesplucked to the core.Take me like a log and feed me tothe campfire, let me turn to ash so I can start again. Allison Grayhurst is amember of the League of Canadian Poets. Four times nominated for “Best of the Net”,2015/2017, she has over 1125 poems published in over 450 internationaljournals and anthologies. She has 21 published books of poetry, six collectionsand six chapbooks. She lives in Toronto with her family. She is a vegan. Shealso sculpts, working with clay; www.allisongrayhurst.com  Poem by Allison Grayhurst Drawing by Janne Karlsson