1. Like with a river in a valley, how it bends oxbows, wends, never runs straight
2. How birds lift on thermals, in spirals
3. Like with witches, the way they skip a generation when they pass down their craft
4. How the flicker flies in bursts, seven wingbeats ahead, then rest, dropping torpedo-like, wings folded tight to her bones, then seven more wingbeats, rising and then rest, into the trees
5. How a sailboat tacks with the wind, moving perpendicular to the force that lifts it
6. Like with the wrought-iron fences, old and black, at the Corson Building – balled tips of the iron infill rods between posts at alternating heights – up, down, up down – A B A B A B C – like a dance, mixing the iron into the sky
7. So with the running, the way with the schedule, you let the air in
During the week, you run hard. You run long. And then slip in some shorter runs.
Or you run short during the week before work. And then long on the weekend.
For a month, you run high mileage. Then a bit less. If you run several successive high mileage months, you have discipline and run short the next. You find your pattern. You let yourself heal despite the hunger for more miles. You are running the distance. For years. You have a good high year. Next year you back if off a little. Then surge again the next. You are heroic. More so than others. You are unquenchable. But also cagey. Fox-like, you persevere. Sometimes craving bad weather to run again, to run with the rain against your face.
You do not want a fence that is every panel the same. You do not bring the same lunch every day. The natural world does not run straight. You integrate the rest and the stillness within movement and through pain and pure joy. You are diligent. You meander. The outside air fills your lungs and lifts your feet.