Morning Shadows

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My shadow appears, elongates, disappears,

Each streetlight becomes the sun of my padding galaxy

Recedes and keeps to its small world

As I pass on to the next.

At 5 a.m., the running path feels like a moral highway

Of self-discipline, a thinly populated route to races

Far away in a vague and sunlit future.


The darkness protects me from anything

Beyond the beat of the meet of my shoe with the road

Where in the paling light of the lamps, the

Beetle casualties of the night,

Cracked, black and broken warlocks,

Losing their oozing magic on the asphalt,

Have no power over me. I’m going on.


Out of a black shadow a gray shadow will appear,

Another runner, pushing nowhere but “farther”

Dilutes the path with energy, then disappears.

And then, mile after mile, the darkness flees further,

The sun pinks then blues the sky

And a world emerges from beyond the path.

The streetlights pop and darken in deference.

I go out, too, finished, I stop running and

Walk into the bright world’s worries.

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