Sifting – Poem By Ali Grimshaw

Palms upward as hands face sky 
open spaces between fingers relaxing
into what has been a time of gentle 
and harsh scrubbing of the heart. 
Every inch of skin Brillo pad raw. 
An exfoliation of what has been. 
My fists, no longer clenched 
in tight survival, trust in slow unfurling.
Pain tingling as blood returns to fingertips.
Learning feet reground my trunk 
to an upright position, toes rooted 
past sand into bedrock. Freeing now
agile hands to sift through the helpful lessons 
caught in my soft palms as promises
while unneeded thoughts fall through finger spaces
to join other decomposing conversations 
of days when I didn't know listening.
Composting the no longer serviceable
into nutrients for the new words to come.

© Ali Grimshaw 2021




She lived in a dented silver trailer

plainly, without shine inside and out.

The window view of sea

filled her need for decoration.


Constant rhythm of wave reassurance

ever evolving color of cloud, mist, fog

always filled her with belonging.


Passersby with lipfrowning judgement

downcast look of sadness at her dwelling

would never know her truth.


She had found her community of paradise

between wind and simplicity.


© Ali Grimshaw 2018





Upright they stand

(weathered and disregarded)

thinking themselves powerful.

Vulnerable to elements and eyes

yet never losing their dignity.

It is clarity of purpose that

leaves them self assured

while the landscape

is transformed around them.

They will forever remain

side by side, dependable

a community of stone.


© Ali Grimshaw 2017

Portugal 2017




Blurred branches of feeling

the intersection of “Not good enough,”

and “You fell for that again?”

awkward limbs that cross

and cross again in confusion. While inches

of growth reach, stretch toward light.

The turbulent angles discretely covered

by feathered orange deliciousness.

A fancy distraction,

just like my sunglasses and hat

a layer of colors,

the perfect cover up to keep

my crack of failure private.

© Ali Grimshaw 2017