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A Poem Alive in This Moment

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When writing her poem “All Times and All Tenses Alive in This Moment,” Mary Szybist, associate professor of English, says she was “thinking about faith and doubt and how the two can be entwined and even, perhaps, simultaneous. I wanted each line to read as a declaration and as an open question.”

The poem was recently unveiled as part of a Poetry Paths art mural installation at Pennsylvania College of Art & Design in Lancaster. In the site installation, Szybist’s poem is presented in a sunburst format with no linear beginning or end.

One of the most frequent questions Szybist is asked about the poem is how she formatted it. For that she credits Kelly Wainwright, director of client services in the information technology office. Wainwright formatted the poem—not just once, but multiple times throughout the revision process. “I am grateful for her collaboration and her patience,” says Szybist.

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