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Passing Through Marathon

The name divined from
What it takes to survive
This running divide between
Lake effect snow and merely winter...
A marathon.

Behind wide steel trucks
Speed and wind kick up clouds
That drive away an impotent sun.
The pitch of the road rising, falling,
Changes dictated by the hostile rendezvous
Of snow with tires that bring a muffled depth
To the arc of travel.

The dark trees stand, reaching,
Hackles of an offended forest
Risen against the storm.
The sun only occasionally cutting a swath
Through the campfire smoke sky
Scribing shadow lines
Through hilltop groves.

Small tracks at the highway's edge,
A beast sniffs food in the dim, rough cold,
Each footfall an aspiration toward life
The deep desire to continue.

These sometimes fertile valleys are, now tundra.
The eye is no longer able to read lakes and ponds
Beneath an undulating border of land and ice.
Indifferent white waiting to trick the innocent hunter,
Erase them in cold water
To the deep, numb cocoon of forever.

© J BARRETT WOLF