Marathon

Thoughts on the eternal trail to loneliness

The impact of the ground is almost as abrupt as was the buckling of your knees. You collapse to the dirt, motionless. You wish so much to continue moving but lack all capacity to flex even the muscles of your face. You are skin and bone, almost no remnants of the hearty being you were before. Your legs are exhausted and the soles of your feet no longer remember the touch of soft grass or the gentle caress of the river. If you were to look in a mirror, which you wouldn’t dare, you’d see a flimsy creature with sunken dead eyes and a grey aura, barely alive and somehow not quite dead… though you long to be. How have you come to this? Think back to when you started running. Why are you here and where are you planning to go?

Think.

It was a bright summer day. There were flowers and a breeze that rustled the leaves just right; your favourite song. It was warm and your bare feet carried you through streams and fields and into mountains. Oh, what a day for a soul to be free. But there was someone else, another person and you wanted to explore them just the same. You wanted to see their streams and trails and to hear their stories. And so they showed you. It was completely enthralling. To be given access so quickly and peacefully to the essence of another being is what you long for, and here it was. The organic matter of a living soul; beautiful, radiant, lovely…

And then they did it. They did what no one ever does, what you’re never prepared for them to do because so few have done so… they asked the same of you. Suddenly you were faced with the choice of either sharing your peaceful places with a seeming stranger or running away…

And so here you are, broken and battered by the weather from which you refuse to give yourself refuge. Shivering in the cold, you long for the warmth of another being to thaw your fading heart and hold your freezing hands. But no one comes; you let no one come. You are paralysed by your own thoughts because it is much less painful to harm yourself than it is to even give the chance of being hurt by the hand of someone else.

Why do you always run? Why have you pushed yourself here once again? I have forgotten how to recover. What now can I do?

By Meaghan Weldele

Written 21 November 2017

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