[Harvard Square, Marathon Day 2013] by Sam Cha

Sam Cha reads Harvard Square, Marathon Day 2013


Everything can be saved, but I don’t remember how. The park’s warm, sunny. The busker’s amp cuts out on it’s a cold and it’s a broken. All last night a robin sang like a squeaky door, serenading streetlamps and rats. Now he pecks at grubs, at dried worms. We are small, temporary. I could fall right up the sky, puff into ash against the sun. Still my children smear powdered sugar on my pants, toss banana peels on the sidewalk, scream. When they dance with each other no matter the song the dance is always ashes ashes.

Now they run from bumblebees, from ants—they dash ahead into the graveyard on Church Street, where they chase pigeons, throw breadcrumbs, hair streaming behind them the exact shape of April. When the firetrucks start passing by, they hoot along with the sirens for fun. They count the headstones one by one.



“[Harvard Square, Marathon Day 2013]” first appeared in apt‘s fourth print annual, which you can buy here.


Sam Cha recently completed his MFA in poetry at UMass Boston, where he was the 2011 and 2012 recipient of the Academy of American Poets Prize. His work (poems, essays, fiction, translations) can be found at anderbo, Amethyst Arsenic, ASIA, decomP, Memorious, Paper Scissors, Printer’s Devil Review, and Radius. Also, in two anthologies: Knocking at the Door: Poems About Approaching the Other and The &Now Awards 2: The Best Innovative Writing. He lives and writes in Cambridge, MA.


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