The Thing About Belonging to the Moon – a poem by Alison Hurwitz

The Thing About Belonging to the Moon

Tonight I wish to have the valor and daring to belong to the moon.” 
-Virginia Woolf

Is that you are allowed to pull aside the night, 
or hang your shape, gravid as a grapefruit, 
to unfurl instinct, spread an owl’s wings 
into that feral and inevitable hunger,
curving wilderness along the sky.

There, you will not ever be 
domesticated, tamed, instead become
a thing as mutable as fever or a wish, 
stirring tides to rise inside the pulse –

that surge another woman felt 
some centuries ago, bareheaded 
on a hill where ritual decreed
that stone made slick with blood 
would bring good harvest.

You can be a sharpened sickle slicing 
meaning through the skin of time–
or even disappear into the dark and nobody 
reproaches you or blames you for retreat. 

You can be new and luminous, 
glide high through interlacing clouds 
some humid summer night, 
when the saturated air breathes out 
its longing heavily and sighs.

There, the moon and you dare everything.
There, you will be changed, remade 
without having to explain 
or make amends,

or bend your light to fit 
inside some tiny, 
tightly angled 

Alison Hurwitz has most recently been featured in Global Poemic, Words and Whispers Journal, Poetry in the Time of Coronavirus Volumes 1 and 2, Tiferet Journal, and Writing in a Woman’s Voice.  She was one of six finalists for the grand prize given by Volume 2 of Poetry in the Time of Coronavirus, and recently received an honorable mention Tiferet Journal for its annual poetry prize. On the second Saturday of each month, Alison facilitates a free online poetry reading, Well-Versed Words.  Poets interested in appearing on Well-Versed Words may contact her at She lives with her husband, two sons and rescue dog in North Carolina. Find links to her work at

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