Just Before
by Allison Grayhurst

  1. Before I say goodbye to bitterness
  2. and the slug that crawls across my living room floor,
  3. let me hold my breath, holding thoughts
  4. of the executioner’s rope
  5. sleeping very little
  6. until morning.
  7. Before my grave is exhumed and the daffodils planted there
  8. are carelessly removed, let me thank my every nemesis,
  9. the silence, the autonomy of being underground.
  10. When I am halfway to the surface, let me keep my eyes
  11. on the sky, never turning back to see the place
  12. abandoned, never regretting the companions I found,
  13. though they were roaches
  14. and other crawly things that only stuck around
  15. to feast on my unprotesting flesh.
  16. As I say farewell to my six-by-six hovel
  17. let me release the leeches that latched on
  18. to my every side.
  19. Let it be over with completely.
  20. Let me rise from this pit like a child does from her bed
  21. on Christmas morning.
Packingtown Review – Vol.8, Winter 2016/2017

Allison Grayhurst is a member of the League of Canadian Poets. A sculptor as well as a prolific poet since 1995, her most recent chapbooks are The River is Blind (above/ground press, 2012) and Surrogate Dharma (Kind of a Hurricane Press, 2014). She lives in Toronto with her family. More of her work can be found at allisongrayhurst.com.

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