The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner



A marathon

starts with a single step

I have run the equivalence of hundreds

of marathons on the levies in our area


running all these miles alone

is a lonely and somethimes daunting pursuit

it is best if you have a trusted

running partner that you can

let within yourself when you need

the strength to go on

when you doubt that you can go on

one that with time you trust

one you can share your inner

most fears about running

and completing the race

one that believes in your ability


the marathon takes a lifetime

and never ends

that is why the running partner

is so important because

if you stop running

life passes you by


to run that marathon

we should all start

with a single step


like a friendship


start with the first step

you have a lifetime


I learned this from the butterfly




Against the Grain of Winter


it took a long time

to be able to wear

my face again

after everything

I loved

had died

I would run for hours

on the levies

out by the water

I never returned home

but I always returned

to the place I live

I ran for months

and the months

became years

as I ran for hundreds

if not thousands

of miles

in all that time

all I asked for

was a sign

a sign that

things would be all right

but that sign never came

then one day

as I ran the levy

between storms

in bone cold starkness

a monarch butterfly

appeared and followed me

she should not have

been out that late

in the season

flying alone

in a zig-zag path

against the grain of winter

she disappeared

but surprisingly

an hour later

when I left the levy

to run the streets

she reappeared

and again followed me

like a flickering flame

as it began to rain

it was at that moment

I knew that

things would be all right


It turned out that butterfly

was not a monarch

it was the viceroy


you will finish the marathon

you can count on me to be there to help you

what would I do without your intellectual companionship?


look you are one of the smartest people I have ever met

when things aren’t in a “hurty” space for us I have so much respect and admiration for you

how is it that the most beautiful woman I have ever met is also one of the most intelligent people I have ever met?


you could finish any marathon without me, though I hope you’ll finish this one with me because I so enjoy time with you

and it would be a treasure to really start to get to know you even better

you have nothing to be afraid of… I have so much confidence in you


you truly are a miracle of a woman


you need  to realize that…


you are going to set the world on fire

you’re a “world-beater”


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