Ernie Wormwood



MARATHON

     to an Athenian named Pheidippides

Poetry,
poetry marathon,
five  hours of poems
from the 27 countries
of the European Union.
136 poems
the tragedies of centuries.
Runners bearing their poems
running and running
through the valleys of despair
over the mountains of hope
to the splendid city.
 
They are from the
Embassies in Washington—
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria,
Cyprus, the Czech Republic,
Denmark, Estonia, Finland,
France, Germany, Greece,
Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia,
Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta,
the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal,
Romania, the Slovak Republic, Slovenia,
Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom.

Breathless, running still
their papers curl as if on fire,
from the heat, the beat, the unabashedness.
Yes, poetry burns the tongue.

Poetry-in-motion in Washington, D.C.,
The poets in their first marathon,
crossing the finish line
together, all in a line.

Later running to surgery, I remember.
Oh, ticking clock, if I must die,
let it be with my sisters and brothers of the word.





Ernie Wormwood lives in Leonardtown, Maryland.  On May 5, 2007 she was the Moderator for the first European Poetry in Motion Reading held at the Goethe-Institut in Washington, D.C.  This spring she will have work in the anthology Poem Revised from Marion Street Press and in Poetic Voices Without Borders II from Gival Press.  She recently appeared on Grace Cavalieri's program for the Library of Congress, The Poet and the Poem, which can be heard at www.loc.gov/poetry/poetpoem.html








                                    

 

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