Running Poetry XXII

I still remember the pain. It was a pain that won’t let me run anymore. Walking was ok. I somehow got by with plenty of rest. It rears its ugly head from time to time.

Exhaustion is equal to
An hour of injured running
Plus only five hours of sleep
Plus four more of singing

I thought I had missed
Seven minutes per KM
Had excuse ready

Near perfect pacing
Need to raise mileage next
Ignore injury

I have succumbed to
Pancakes and hot chocolate
Should have kept going

Had to walk again
Still within target pace though
So it is all good

Fourteen days to go
No time to sit on my hands
Must keep mileage up

Eliminated
The overpowering dread
Only pain remains

Stubborn as a rock
Running at boulder pace
Sleep like a stone…NOW!

Unusual route
Hills and runners aplenty
I forgot to walk

The water hates me
Graceless, I sank like a rock
Sad slow journey home

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Running Poetry XXI

Even as life sent me further away from the track, I came hurling back. Perhaps my feet had grown fond of its rubbery surface.

Despair is salty
The crawl upwards is salty
Falling is salty
Triumphant kicks are salty

Chattering demons
Plagued me but, surprisingly,
I finished faster

Voice thrashed by illness
Ran to mend ability
To sing joyful praise

I rolled off the couch
Unto a gusty oval
Fire reignited

Sleep deprivation
And a week of stagnation
Or millennia
Ended inertia

Prophetic musings
Waylaid by reality
Eyes off the abyss

Run turned excursion
Beyond known territories
Updated my charts

Poorly run 4k
Plus a kinda fast 1k
Equals punishment

This was a test run
Should I bandit tomorrow?
Injury screamed NO!

A dull ache upsets
The core with every stride
Wait, forgot my shirt!

Running Poetry XX

Here’s another batch of poems from my halcyon days of running. Back then, I had more time to stretch my legs. I had more time to nurture my competitive spirit. I had more time to giggle at the word ‘fartlek’. I had more time to dream. Those were great days.

Grown men giggling as
Sandals slapped against their heels
Mimicking my stride

Gave in to instinct
The hunger drove me, moved me
Towards a grand feast

Maintain the barest
Semblance of control and let
The fall take over

Fettered by questions
Answers from tricky pages
Stopped asking, just ran

Cheerless sky deities
Pelted cold wind and drizzle
Drew warmth from prayer

Focus
On my breathing
On my stride
On my path
Focus
Follow breathing
Extend stride
Mind my path
Focus

High beam headlights set
Eye sockets afire
Blind to serious threats
As horns join the choir

Staggered out of bed
Each stride lacked motivation
Changed course back to bed
And resumed hibernation

Heat is no excuse
For walking and water breaks
Walked home as penance

The tale has ended
And all that remains is the
Drawn out epilogue

Running Poetry XIX

My poetry is connected to my running. The more I run, the more write. If I do a thousand runs then I’m bound to produce a thousand poems. I do write for reasons beyond running and I do run with varying effort on different routes. One activity is not dependent on the other. My secret hope (not anymore) is that I acquire mastery on both skills. It would be interesting to see which skill I master first.

Twelve kilometers
Thirty laps on an oval
My friend’s birthday run

With firm resolve, I
Dealt a crushing blow to doubt
I know peace once more

Head not in the game
Dodging projectiles instead
Balls and bat guano

If this was easy
It won’t be worth the effort
And the sacrifice

I wanna eat some barbecue
And some baked potatoes too
A pitcher of your cold iced tea
Oh my gosh I need to pee

Coaxed sweat to flow
On a cold summer evening
Labored up-tempo
The mile seemed everlasting

Found the missing link
The panacea of all
Of my running ills

On a bright Sunday
Morning, I ran and dodged a
Lethal piece of…leaf

Fists trained for fighting
And eyes that gleamed with malice
I feared for my life

I run
For the one who celebrates
I run
With the one who will not yield
I run
To the one who leads the charge

Running Poetry XVIII

This is proof. The evidence dear readers! My penchant for the dramatic in full display. However, you must forgive me. I just ran a mile or 2 and I’m not quite myself.

Ancient and surly
Guardian of the rubber track
Get off the fast lanes!

Through fire and debris
Through crippling terror and pain
No force shall stop them

No carb diet killed
Even the barest attempt
Of all out running

Any second
The seams will tear
And I reckon
Feet will go bare

When I cross that line
These wet noodles I call legs
Better be running

Idealistic
Though unrealistic, I
Faltered at sixteen

Pacing forgotten
Yet I overcame target
Quite please with myself

Junk mile
Easy run
It took a while
But I did have fun

My hardest workout
Ever, which is also what
I complained last week

Something in my eye
A sharp speck that vexes me
And obscures vision

Running Poetry XVII

Running for a week seemed an insurmountable challenge two years ago but I conquered it despite my weak constitution. I am sure many elite runners will scoff at this minor achievement. It surely seems minor to me right now. However, it is a good thing to record and celebrate these small moments. How else will you know the worth of your present successes? I may have long since moved on to greater insurmountable challenges in and out of running but it always brings a smile to my face when I take in all I have done in my life.

Slow like a turtle
Fast like a hobbled rabbit
No dinner tonight?

Gloom broke the anvil
No fire to curb inner strife
Still the hammer falls

Discount brevity
Someone set the night on fire
Water, sweet water

Caring less and less
Downcast and slow to warm-up
Only at the start

No recovery
Loud dogs and mad motorists
Did I even sleep?

Colossal, golden
She holds court among the stars
Lighting wayward souls

Beasts, pedestrians
Motorists, and vehicles
Want a piece of me

Set myself to task
Ran every day for a week
‘Tis finally done

Summer afternoon
Relaxed and unhurried stride
A perfect primer

Long recoveries
Anaerobic laziness
Unmotivated

If I wallow in despair
I’d risked her righteous anger
I have no courage to spare
Though I wish she’d come sooner

Running Poetry XIII

These poems from two years ago look like they were written by an entirely different person. Have I changed that much?

A blue horizon
Sky and earth met at the edge
Severed the iris

A lunar stare down
Adds pressure to refinement
Falling wrought anew

Pure adrenaline
Enlivening a spent heart
The hurt is no more

Freed of agony
A dream followed every stride
Vexed by the waking

Peace has made me weak
Subservient, pain is master
The rebel wakens

This was no sequel
Saturated to the bone
Each step was feeble
Yet still I entered the zone

Suspend inaction
Cerulean concedes to black
Throw down averted

Decelerated
Despite frequent reminder
And dispirited
By the misleading timer

No more hiatus
For now, I’m mired in self-doubt
Rekindle the fire

First, you silence fear
Then agony comes second
When the end draws near
Fight for each nanosecond