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River - songs from the poetry of Allison Grayhurst

by Diane Barbarash

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1.
River 03:53
I will run my breath, across your eyelids go to you, trace the edges of your hands and find infinity, inside your torment I will drift into you, like the wind and you will not mind my lips like a shadow, on your skin darkening but leaving no weight I will run to you I will run to you I will run to you I will run to you I will cup your flesh, and stretch you through this intimacy, because I own you as you, own me and it’s not a bad thing or anything to fear I will run to you I will run to you I will run to you I will run to you I will heal the red in the whites of your eyes You will be the mania that I climb through I will run to you I will run to you these days of standing close depend on the ease of our mutual exposure I will speak, and you’ll step into my voice like stepping into a river I will run to you I will run to you I will run to you I will run to you I will heal the red in the whites of your eyes You will be the mania that I climb through I will run to you I will run to you
2.
Now I am Two 04:22
it is this way, togetherness a covenant, with tenderness and speaking thoughts only glimpsed the snow falls, like rain as the afternoon moves without time our hands, pressed as one neither of us will ever be alone again without the other one we love we’ll never be alone again it is always miraculous unexpected awakening vanishing then re-emerging and with these things of harmony the bond we fused is unbreakable I was one, now I am two neither of us will ever be alone again without the other one we love we’ll never be alone again the children gathered, in our arms add to our liberation laughing at things only ours it is what we were praying for what years have not diluted the summoning of all our parts neither of us will ever be alone again without the other one we love we’ll never be alone again
3.
he turns his hawk head to view the shells of turtles streaking the still-shroud of water in tanks as blue as sky he lifts a leg and talons tensed pivots to defend against an enclosing shadow with whitish eyes and an impossible urge to fly he hops along his man-made perch toward the cages where squirrels leap from metal to wood scattering like leaves in unpredictable flurry scattering like leaves in unpredictable flurry spring, he will never experience again nor know the scent of a pent-up life released like sunflowers blooming or the feel of the moon colder but more comforting than being touched with whitish eyes and an impossible urge to fly he hops along his man-made perch toward the cages where squirrels leap from metal to wood scattering like leaves in unpredictable flurry scattering like leaves in unpredictable flurry bridge he is without time or tribe and like fire he haunts by just being with whitish eyes and an impossible urge to fly he hops along his man-made perch toward the cages where squirrels leap from metal to wood scattering like leaves in unpredictable flurry scattering like leaves in unpredictable flurry scattering like leaves in unpredictable flurry scattering like leaves
4.
if all the seeds fell like blood or blood like seeds into the ravenous earth, and time was a wagging tail in the dark I’d know that death would come I’d know that death would come but it’s not my heart that fails me no, it’s not my heart that fails me it’s the things outside, the shadows I see no, it’s not my heart that fails me it is the hill I climb and stumble down a rocky incline when I return if only once a day I go to meet death’s stalking eyes to meet death’s stalking eyes but it’s not my heart that fails me no, it’s not my heart that fails me it’s the things outside, the shadows I see no, it’s not my heart that fails me the things outside are like the shadow like the one I see on the neighbor’s window and the frightening madness, of strangers here on my wall like an insect on my wall but it’s not my heart that fails me no, it’s not my heart that fails me it’s the things outside, the shadows I see no, it’s not my heart that fails me
5.
Girl 03:51
under the willow tree a girl was standing lonely with the worst of nights ahead they said drink from the tar pit waters and swallow the oysters the ones lost from their shells she saw the drug the wind made though she did not let it shift her heart everywhere the notion stood that fighting back was what she was ah… now the willow leaves have fallen and gone brown the girl has moved beside a cliff and she dances as though she could not fall her body held against the edge and they gasp to pity her poor body by the rocks and ridges she continues to move like a beautiful sound sure of the hand that guides her ah… she saw the drug the wind made though she did not let it shift her heart everywhere the notion stood that fighting back was what she was ah… (don’t let it shift your steadfast heart)
6.
Seamless 03:24
raincoats and rainy seasons are behind us now I picked a feather you took it and now it’s yours and just like that rich as the coral reef waters we were initiated intensity is a button intensity is a button fears of the future put aside left to their weeping become shoulders secrets receiving and like a primeval work of strings through this communication we see the courage intensity is a button intensity is a button we know survival is tyranny what we seek is not purely for the sake of security our bodies touching every crease rejoice in our compatibility for the sake of security the past culminates in this single out pouring, it is a privileged evolution strange rhythms risked foreheads pressed giving way to beautiful disclosure intensity is a button intensity is a button intensity is a button intensity
7.
You Are 04:15
you are simple like death simple like death unmistakable containing the most feverish of mysteries within a boundless domain you are beautiful like a cat is beautiful galactic sensual form silently giving me a gaze of voice and blood all I bless and all I need I hold because of you no meaning nor madness could replace the milk and breath that you are you are fire driven like, stars and like sex in perpetual combustion an inner pulse of endless dance dance dance on mystical tides you are more than sun and bird and fox more than soil to my groundless heart you are gentle like a raindrop caught gentle like the shelter of a best friend’s arms a best friend’s arms all I bless and all I need I hold because of you no meaning nor madness could replace the milk and breath that you are
8.
At the throat, brushed green like tile I shine. The devil says "hum-drum", the eel struggles, futile like a wagging tail, so many broken, hating with the hardness of crocodiles and ants, pulling along their dead, to consume, knowing nothing of sorrow or forgiveness. All night I sit with my naked thighs on the carpet, red from the heat. What point could there possibly be to all this pain, the death of others, the sickness that swarms in mid-air and the Hurricanes hit the graveyards. you saw the ones you lost you sure you did enough you saw the ones the world cast off you’ll meet them soon enough you’ll meet them soon enough A gull tilts on a telephone wire. I wish to bid goodbye. I wish for ice-cream cones in my fridge, a handful of poppies to give some child, any child, I meet. I see dead eyes in my dream, glossed with mucous and unbearable vacancy. How do I serve when the world is so cold Let us go now, my nightmares and I, let us go under the light, let us go until our heart's blood is free-falling, exposed, let us go free-falling, exposed, let us go The humpbacks know this, the midgets and also the centipedes. I want to hide in rooms where infants are sleeping or salamanders nurse their young. Lord The darkness is in me. The ground deceives me, changes colors changes me as I go. you saw the ones you lost you sure you did enough you saw the ones the world cast off you’ll meet them soon enough you saw the ones the world cast off you’ll meet them soon enough you’ll meet them soon enough you’ll meet them soon enough

about

Last New Year’s Eve I found myself engaged in one of Allison’s poetry books and in a moment of pure inspiration I reached for my guitar, and the first song fell out. It was just a chorus taken from a few lines but I knew instantly that something beyond me was about to follow. And so it was, for the following 8 months I continued to compose with Allison’s blessing, songs from her visually stunning poems.

credits

released October 5, 2017

Produced by Diane Barbarash
Vocals and guitar by Diane Barbarash
Lyrics by Allison Grayhurst
Lyrical compositions and additions by Diane Barbarash
Musical composition and arrangement by Diane Barbarash
© 2017 Diane Barbarash and Allison Grayhurst, SOCAN All Rights Reserved

CD design and layout by Azadeh Yaraghi at Gogo Telugo Creatives
photos of Diane by Kevin Clark at Kevin Clark Studios
Starlings Murmerings photo by Andrew Forsyth at thewildlifephotographer.com

Allison Grayhurst's latest book Sight at Zero is available on Amazon
www.allisongrayhurst.com

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Diane Barbarash Vancouver, British Columbia

Thank you to the ones who inspire me daily to be true to myself when I write... Steve Earle, Sigur Ros, Kathleen Edwards, Julie Miller, Neil Young, Rhianna, Future, David Usher, Bon Iver, Joni Mitchell, Yellawolf, Lights...

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