i am astounded by these runners
surrounded by the shouts of crowds,
shrouded by legacy, lined up
like a procession -- with flags
instead of guns, or candles.
how long have they been running?
only a few short hours;
it is already almost the end.
as they near the finish,
their pace never slackens –
steps tick off the distance.
they are superhuman -
all of them pushing a boundary:
the body, the mind, the moment,
some of them don’t even wear shoes.
i remember there were bombings there
only a few years ago.
the finish line filled with smoke and bodies
and parts of bodies.
for almost ten minutes after,
runners continued to cross
the finish line, unnoticed.
i have seen the resilience of people,
the way a city can dust itself off and rise again.
we can learn to wave our flags once more,
we can rediscover how to rejoice,
we can celebrate each other
and not live in fear.
let us not forget –
we’re still running.choose the direction.