My will is set to run around the lakes
four times. I start with half my normal stride
to test my strength, alleviate mistakes
of carelessness, impatience, or of pride.
This time I’ve brought my water, though it’s cool;
I know twelve miles will take their toll of thirst.
So rather than to be again a fool,
I’ve come in preparation for the worst.
And though I’ve chosen shoes that feel too big,
and though I’ve chosen socks that feel too thin,
and though I can’t avoid each stone or twig,
and though it’s not a race to lose or win,
I run to my redemption with a will
that makes it seem like time is standing still.
This sonnet is available in my book, “26.2 Sonnets for Runners.”