Wow! Well, I did say that I was pretty bad at blogging regularly and here's the proof! My first blog post in what? Six months?
Having got that out of the way, here's an actual, bona fide blog post. Champagne, anyone?
Anyone who knows me, or reads a lot of my poetry, knows that I'm a runner. Running is physical, of course, but it's far more than that to me. I run because I struggle with depression and running is by far the best medication I've ever found - better than other forms of exercise, even.
My depression is exacerbated by the lack of sunlight in the dark half of the year. Many of my poems that celebrate the Autumn and Winter are a form of catharsis for me - a way for me to overcome my natural antipathy to them.
The fact is, I DO love Autumn and Winter - I love all seasons. But my health suffers during the darker months and for many years, I just felt despair when I thought of the encroaching darkness.
On the Autumn Equinox, I ran a half marathon. An injury had been building for a while, but I felt I needed to do the race. (Partly for my psychological well being. It's a long story...)
I haven't been able to run since then, as my injury is peroneal tendonitis and will only heal if I rest from running completely, until it's better.
This is terrible timing - and I am NOT a good patient! I want to run... But I know that I need to rest (my body's tired from over-training) and I know that I have lessons to learn in this, too.
I'm learning them... I'll probably write poems about them, too, at some point...
- By Ruth Calder Murphy -
Just in time for the darker days
and the longer nights,
just in time for the Seasons to turn about
and brew in me
a restless longing for a quick way out
- a way to connect with Earth,
run with the breeze,
dance with the tumbling,
gold-edged leaves -
just as unease settles in my belly
and my mind turns to my body
for miracles of movement
to help it through
- to help it do the things it has to do
and be all it needs to be
to carry me safe through Winter’s night,
forward to the waiting arms of Spring -
Just now, as the Equinox opens out its scales
and hangs Everything in the balance
before folding again towards the dark,
my ligaments and tendons,
joints - and all - protest
and call me to a sudden break.
Don’t you know,
my bumbling, ill-timed body,
what’s at stake?
All through Summer, you gave your best
and now, I need you - more than then -
to give your best again...
a deep inhale...
Go; rest and heal.
My mind will have to wait
and that Way Out
will have to enter late.
I want to run,
but first I have to sit -
and learn the lessons
that will come of it.
Image: "Kate On the Rooftop" By Ruth Calder Murphy - illustration for The Everlasting Monday - a novel by Ruth Calder Murphy with Mathew Taylor. The novel is available on Amazon and through www.arciemme.com