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***Poetry Contest #10: Eighth Place***

Poetry by Cathy Bryant

January Joggers
Published April 17, 2016
Wax Poetry and Art - Contests
Poetry Contest #12
Socially Engaged & Satirical Poetry Contest #1
Under 25 Poetry Contest #1
Prize-Builder Contest for Published & Unpublished Poems #1
~ Wax Poetry and Art: "January Joggers" by Cathy Bryant ~
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January Joggers

The better to display joggers’ plumage, the days
are as grey as it gets. The first woman carries hot-pink weights
to match her top, trainers, headband, leggings and face;
that face is loaded with misery and boiling with embarrassment.
She knows that she is drawing eyes, and she hates it all.
At least self-flagellation could be performed
in the comfort of one’s own monastery.

Further on we drive past a perky ponytail,
its owner smiling, while behind lags her puffing boyfriend,
who has begun to hate her and her pert bottom.
He longs for warmth, fatty foods, soft flab.

Next is a man with sports drinks and headphones.
He has given up and sulk-walks, pug-faced with fractured pride,
his legs blue with cold; we can feel the goosepimples from here.
He is exposed, regretting his choice of little satin shorts.

The following week, like signs of allegiance to a rebel cause
or a secret society, bandages appear on ankle and knee,
and the odd elbow. The injured keep walking fiercely,
sometimes breaking into a wincing jog-lollop for a moment.
Their faces are slapped with their own defiance.
They still clutch accessories, their holy relics.

By February the season is over. All that can be spotted
are the regulars in their worn and comfortable gear
as they beat out a tattoo on their usual courses. They run
in the easy lope of healthy wolves, their minds roaming,
and for the first time we feel a touch of jealousy,
and more of admiration as we cough by in our fat cars.


Biography
Cathy Bryant worked as a life model, civil servant and childminder before
becoming a professional writer. She has won 20 literary awards, including
the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Prize and the Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry
Contest, and her work has appeared in over 200 publications. Cathy's
books  are
Contains Strong Language and Scenes of a Sexual Nature and
Look at All the Women (poetry), How to Win Writing Competitions
(nonfiction), and Pride & Regicide - a Mary Bennet Mystery (a novel). See
her listings for cash-strapped writers at
www.compsandcalls.com, updated
on the first of every month. Cathy lives in Cheshire, UK.
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Wax Poetry and Art
Poetry Contest #10 Results
1. After the Fall
2. Devious
3. To Fill the Silence
4. Triptych (Amsterdam)
5. Burgeoning
6. no milk no cream no sugar
7. No Man's Future
8. January Joggers
9. Heartlab: 20 Year X-Ray
10. Never Left the Flowing Meanders...
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