POETRY

September 5th

A birthday poem

Amy Jasek
2 min readSep 8, 2023

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Homemade cake! photo by author

The city lays out stones for runners
marking the quarters, the miles
a welcome boost for weary legs
determined to go the distance
I don’t count them, but I
watch for them, little individual
cenotaphs of triumph

I made it: this far, that far,
to the point where I’ll turn
around, to the finish line

The stones line the popular
paths, the ones that are
laid out and well-maintained
run elsewhere and
you are on your own
stone-free, self-measuring

Today is my birthday
every year the light is similar
and I am similar
in most ways

It’s not a milestone year
but then again if we only
counted the milestones, we
would only live ten or twelve
thirteen if we are really lucky
depending on what you consider
to be a landmark age
and I’m pretty sure in my
years I have traveled millions
already

with a wink to all the quarters
along the way, most of them
sprinted by without
taking any notice
but sometimes I have pockets
full of them

So I will declare
on this day that belongs to me
(although I share it with
countless others, including
several friends)
that every year is a
milestone

and I will go
further
to say that I
consider every day
to be one also

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