No sales clerk
or hand to count coins.
A wish is like a wave that breathes,
hunting with the tide.
The sand is grasped but never held –
its form lost again in the unforgiving sea.
I had a wish, jealous and absolute.
It took my days like a nunnery and
discarded all urban vice.
It was my only footwear, my mornings
of praise and exalted sighs.
It caused my bones to snap like a dry crust of bread
and left my innards excavated, desperate for anything else.
This wish has never died, though for a decade it has been
beaten down. It walks beside me, deformed and chained.
I own it and it owns me, as we walk, born as one.
Copyright © 2004 by Allison Grayhurst
First published in “October Hill Magazine Spring 2017 “, June 2017
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