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Orbital: by a poet on the run

   Tuesday, October 29th, 2013
   Half Marathon Training

“my constant running buddy”
We would like to share a poem by one of our runners at the Temecula Half Marathon – lets call her a poet on the run, her shadow, her constant running buddy is pictured above.

Become a dogged, dying star. Track
your gravitational field on hunks of space
matter ahead of you. It’s midday, race day,
mile 10, and you have to get out
of your own way. You feel it
when you break one, feel it in your solar plexus
as you close the gap and something snaps
like a plastic bracelet too thin to pass your knuckles.
Pick them off, coach says, one by one, and you swell
beyond your falling-rising limbs. You, a Hale Bop
blaze of will. The trail talks a sun’s tongue,
noon-chapped and dust hung. Your eyes dim
to sepia, feet crunch to the percussion
of your lungs, and drum. Charged, your target senses
your shadow long at her feet, sees your fists and tastes
a moment she might draft in your tail, become
debris in your gravity—but she snaps.
You engulf and forego with a swish
of forearms, satiated only for the moment
lost in attaining it. Both sting
and relief. It’s a race, the silent scrape
of resolve.

Jen Marshall Lagedrost