Emily as I Ran a Very Long Way by Darren Demaree

I ran a very long way for a very long time

& as I slowed to arbitrarily finish, I was

handed a medal for the goal of which I knew

 

was sacrifice, but what was being called

achievement. I ran a very long way for a very

long time & I as I did it overdressed for them,

 

the crowd of the republic, I was given a medal

for my style of running, not for stopping to run.

I ran a very long way for a very long time

 

& when I lifted my arms, exposed my ribs, I felt

two hands adjust my ribs, stuff a brown, flat

medal against my heart, it was Emily, it was

 

reward, for when I lifted my arms I kept my legs

churning, I kept running, never knowing

what the medals meant, but knowing she knew.

Darren Demaree
Darren DemareeDarren C. Demaree is living in Columbus, Ohio with his wife and children. He is the author of As We Refer to Our Bodies (2013) and Not For Art Nor Prayer (2014), both forthcoming from 8th House Publishing. He is the recipient of two Pushcart Prize nominations and a Best of the Net Nomination.