We aren’t always successful in outrunning our problems, but occasionally we are compelled with enough strength to outrun them.

Running along the left dirt shoulder of a dusty road, I am the deer in the headlights.  Swimming upstream like a salmon, the world hanging in the balance.

Salt saturated sweat mixes with condensation of the night like a cocktail and blurs my vision, but I see more clearly.  Heart races at 180 BPM, my feet try to keep pace.

I’m tired; but most of all, I’m tired of being tired.  So tired, I can’t sleep.  Running energizes, but I run to avoid, to escape.  I run from life.

I crane my neck as I pass by a scene from a Robert Frost poem.  Freshly harvested grain combed neatly to provide the appearance of waves, rolling in across the plain on a calm fall evening.  Forest trees stand guard over the art along the perimeter.  The scene beckons to me.  I wish to live in that picture, but I dare not wander off the road – I might never return.

My legs are heavy, my breath labored.  Headlights from my back push me along – I harvest the light like a sail on a vessel.  A course uncharted, a destination unknown.  Blindly exploring the night in search of something that may not even exist.

Why do we wait?  What do we wait for?

I pick up the pace.  I run pass homes, friends, footsteps and memories.  I’ve forgotten home and I’m not sure I can ever get back.  I’m not ready to let go.

I sprint towards the finish, just as I was taught.  I’ve slowed considerably over the years, but it still feels like flying.  I wish I could.  I just keep running in hopes that perhaps one day, I will.

Homeless, no longer safe standing – I run.


About peterdbarrows

Student at Grand Valley State University. Sports fanatic, hat collector, literature and movie enthusiast, connoisseur of all things prose. A social media philosopher -- poet in my own time.

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