Runner’s High

The bitter cold stings and whips

Against your skin

As your feet blaze

Through the terrain.

The high is in full throttle,

And you’re savoring every second

Of this bliss.

 

The beginning wasn’t too unpleasant,

But now this euphoria

Of energy and joy

Comes unbridled,

And, for a moment,

You catch a glimpse

Of Nirvana.

 

The sprint having reached

A steady rhythm and pace,

You carry on

To maintain this pleasure,

This perfection.

 

Something cuts you off–

A lost and disoriented walker,

Unable to make their mind up–

You pause

To let them cross.

 

You feel great,

But now feel the stinging ache

Of tight muscles

Between your shoulders.

 

No big, you tell yourself,

Proceeding to try and regain

The addictive rush.

 

You pause more often,

For the ache of your joints

Have coupled

With a need for water.

You didn’t realize your thirst

Until inspection

Of a leg

In the dry wind

Made it so.

 

You have to be honest

With yourself,

But, nonetheless,

The end won’t come to you,

So you carry on.

 

The rush is gone.

The fibers in your body

Scream in protest

To stop.

The elements now in full assault

Against your senses.

 

You ask yourself

How long?

What else needs to break

Or strain

Before you collapse completely?

Before this hellfire

Takes everything?

 

Despite this,

You know the race

Isn’t over.

The end draws

Ever closer,

The golden ticket

To the finale.

 

The rush is gone,

Replaced with a new

Incendiary wildfire.

 

Yet, as if by a miracle,

You now find yourself

Finished.

 

The line is crossed,

And you recline

On the grassy knolle.

That first rush never returned,

And your body still aches

With furious fervor

Against you.

 

It doesn’t matter.

 

You soak in

The satisfaction of completion.

It isn’t euphoric, granted,

But the feeling

Of liberation

Soothes the body.

 

Here you are,

Bruised, scarred, and weary,

And still triumphant

As you slip into

A more rewarding satisfaction,

Surrendering your body

To a healing rest.

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