Four years ago, I did not know if I would make it to see another Leap Day. Back then, my greatest goal was to make it to 40. I've made it. I can think about other things now, to some extent. And so I wrote a little poem about Leap Day. Or maybe it's about Julius Caesar, or Shakespeare, or how we think about history and literature. Regardless, it's different than anything I would have written when death seemed right around the corner.
See you in four. Right? Here we are four years ago, and here we are today. Things change and they don't.
Before the Leap
by Katy Jacob
I can imagine Caeser sitting in Rome before it was ancient,
kissing a woman before Cleopatra,
talking to Brutus before he knew they were at fault,
going, and looking, before he conquered and rephrased it,
believing what he wished before he knew what it was,
planning his speech before crossing the Rhine,
contemplating the die before it was cast,
carrying out the evil that men do,
suffering seizures before epilepsy existed,
living with grief before one child killed the other,
laughing with friends and countrymen before Shakespeare was born,
inventing time before anyone told him otherwise,
giving himself an extra day a little ways before the Ides of March
just in case he might be here in four years to remember it
and also just in case he would not,
before his necessary end came when it came.