Everyone Has Hope
The young author of this work, Teagan Archer, has stolen my heart! She is junior high school student in Mancos, CO were I reside. A friend mentioned that she had written a poem about Katherine Switzer. That name rattled around in my head until I remembered (with a little help from Google!) that back in 1967 she was the first woman to run the Boston Marathon. Below is a picture of Katherine in 1967 and in 2017, when she ran the race again.
Teagan was challenged in a class to answer the question, can we learn history through poetry. She thought, researched and wrote this wonderful piece about a very significant event in history, the day Katherine Switzer ran the Boston Marathon. When the project was complete Switzer read her poem and sent her a signed copy of her memoir.
Girls Can RUN the World Teagan Archer
The year was 1967 Doctor Who and Jeopardy air on TV While the Beach Boys play on the radio All was heaven… This was also the year that a woman did the said “Impossible” There was hope
It’s the night before the big race Runners all over the USA are shuffling with nerves Some try to sleep, While others decide not to fight it People get all their stuff together for the big race, The Boston Marathon
The day of the race Butterflies zoom around in every runner's stomach As race directors race around to fix last-minute details As they pin on their bibs they understand That this is their final commitment to being here Hope was there
Runners get the breakfast of runners Hours before the race As not to upset their stomachs Pancakes, Sausage, Orange Juice, Eggs, Hash Browns, and Bacon And don't forget their Coffee to wake them, from this wonderland of impossible
The day of the race a light mist is coming down Sprinkling the runners on the back of their necks And cooling them down immensely As all this chaos was happening A young woman by the name of Katherine Switzer Was getting ready for the race of her life
“On your marks.” All the runners line up “Get set.” They crouch down into ready position, people anxiously watched on tv “Go.” And it starts the pushing, and the shoving, and the pulling… and the racing… and hoping
Hoping to be first Hoping to finish Hoping to be famous Hoping to show the world what they could do
1 mile had passed This is when people realized That a woman… Was in a men's race Some people were fine with it But some people's minds were not equipped for this So they started yelling
The thunder and yells were booming loud in her ears The rain coming down harder and harder Everybody was miserable and cold The hope was starting to disappear
The young woman was pushed around and shoved By the men who thought they were better News vans started to pull up Snap, “What are you doing here?” asked a news reporter Split, Splat, Boom Snap, snap, snap “What… How… Young Woman.” Scribble, Scribble, Splat, Boom, Split
She didn't answer 5 miles had passed Split, Splat, Split, Splat her feet just kept going It was like something in her had to keep going
So that the criticism couldn't catch up Through all the criticism and drama and put-downs She kept going And she started to hope
On and on and on and on And eventually, people realized that they couldn't get to her Not because of the men that surrounded her But because she let those harsh comments slip off her like an eel All through the next 20 miles She hoped that she could make a difference
Because once she got over all of that criticism All she could see was the finish line The rain clouds started to part The sun rose high into the sky And a rainbow came up out of the sky This was the start of a new age An age of women standing up for their rights, not letting men push them around
This is when people realized that women are human too They can do the same things men can WE are strong WE are brave And WE can believe WE are worth it
When she finished the race She didn't just break a barrier for herself She broke a barrier for something bigger The world The world had started to hope
Now that the barrier is gone Women all over the world Come to race, to hope In the Boston Marathon Because of #261 Everyone has hope
Teagan is a budding author and also a runner. The picture below is of Teagan, Cathy Yost, and Sahr Thomas. Congratulations Teagan! YOU ROCK!