What is the measure of light?
Packets of photons. Or lumens
Footcandles, perhaps
In physics, I learned of all these and more,
Mostly now forgotten
And I am unsure what the value was
Of the question
Like asking the value of a person:
Every person’s life has value beyond measure
Yet, when something is immeasurable
Often ‘measureless’ is treated as ‘none’

I have a meaningful measure
For light, and perhaps
For humanity:
‘Can I see?’

Today was mostly a nice day in the Northwest
Contrarian that I am, I waited
Until the clouds returned
And the light was fading
To undertake a run

I’d been thinking about it all day
But long ago discovered the lie within
“It’s the thought that counts.”
As dusk approached
My resolve turned to action

At one of my favorite trails,
Ringing a lake, I began
In light, first, but then
As it faded, I became aware
Of one following me
Wearing a headlamp

‘O! Ye of little faith!’ I thought
Never above stealing a good line,
Even in my thoughts
Irked by the intrusion of artifice
In the middle of the mostly-natural
And also spurred on by latent
Competition, losing latency
I picked up the pace

Slowly, at first,
Then, like Ron Clarke admonished,
Increasing throughout my run
Until, at the end, I was alone
Even thought had deserted me
Leaving in its wake
A zen tranquility

Which was welcome.


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