It is the poetry of life

  • Tuesday, April 09, 2013
  • 1
Now I've been happy lately, 
thinking about the good things to come
And I believe it could be, 
something good has begun

Cause out on the edge of darkness, 
there rides a peace train
Oh peace train take this country, 
come take me home again
(Cat Stevens) 
I was standing on top of a tall dune edging a Cornish beach. Out to sea in front of me was a fiery sunset. I don't know what made me look behind but at that moment a local runner leapt over the skyline, soared past my shoulder and made like a tumbleweed down the dune in a feckless expression of freedom and joy.
I had to try it.
I know I have a bad knee and I'm supposed to be nursing it back to full strength. I knew I was putting it at risk but standing there in that moment watching him freefall/ fly to the beach in great flailing arcs and explosions of sand I decided that I could not make the long drive back to London without a Cornish beach run. I thought to hell with the knee, lets run.
So the next day I did.
Barefoot, in shorts and an old baselayer I did the falling thing down the dune face before running along the beach. I last ran on January 27, 2013 and my lungs let me know it! As a distance run it was nothing, 1.4 miles, but for me it had enormous significance. One, the knee held. Two, I was running. Three, I was barefoot, a chance for a purist run! I don't run to be fit or keep slim or any other reasons of vanity. I long ago got past any need to express my machismo. For me running is a joy, it is the poetry of life where I practise the rhythm's of solitude and friendship. It's in my gene code.
Running through the cold, clean surf reaffirmed these things and reignited my motivation to get past this crappy knee.
As Walt Whitman put it:
I too am not a bit tamed, I too am untranslatable, I sound my barbaric
YAWP over the roofs of the world.


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