Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Poetry Wednesday: The Beginning

Since we have Tattoosday, I have decided to devote Wednesdays to poetry, preferably original stuff, which may force me to write more, or less. Who knows how the Muse works? Anyway, this is one of my many subway poems. Hope you enjoy. Comments always warmly embraced.

Run in the Marathon (Walk in the Station)

Safety aside, running always has its risks.
Taking flight is not always right,
but what about those of us who itch to run,
hanker for the adulation heaped upon
the numbered souls in the marathon?

For nine years now, I have watched
from the corner of 92nd and 4th
in Brooklyn, where everyone still has
fresh legs, and the Kenyans have yet
to even break a sweat.

And each year I ponder registration,
joining the throng of thirty thousand strong,
knowing I would be at the back
of the pack, the group that attracts
less of a roar, but gathers polite applause.

Yet I know such fantasies are fleeting.
I recognize their temporary allure--
like a bee sting, the effects will slowly
fade away.
My body was built
for sprints, not journeys of twenty-six miles,

which brings me back to the cautionary assembly
of words on the subway. I know we are not meant
to take the phrasing literally,
but it is in our blood,
a vestige of some ancient survival rite:
the cinematic admiration of the spy, the adventurer,
the commando......

......the lazy tone of the closing doors,
the leaping of the last few stairs,
the short dash
and the ballet,
turning and slipping sideways, unmolested,
between the jaws of the subterranean beast,
my heart still bounding
as I take my seat
in Victory - my smile as broad as the tape

stretching across the finish line.

© 2007, William Dickenson Cohen

1 comment:

Leon said...


In honor of Poetry Wednesday, please visit The Ancient One who remembers all those silly rhyming couplets and jingles from so long ago.

- Dad