Stray

I am looking at the solstice moon and the way it reflects off the wind blown snow. I am wearing only cycling clothes and it is 9 degrees. As I struggle up University Mountain Ridge the moon is perched above my destination like a vulture waiting for its lunch to die. The snow is deep and the crust cuts into my shins. I can feel it only because its pressure against my shin bone. I am wondering how I can stand without feeling anything.  My muscles must be trained because I cant stop them and I keep struggling against the hardened snow. I just keep struggling. In my delirium a story comes to mind.

I imagine that I am like that stray dog that you show affection for. Maybe you feel guilty or something; that is not the point. You might even let me follow you home for a evening indoors. I really do like the indoors.

But eventually you get annoyed or maybe you cant have pets where you live. You decide that have to get rid of me. You take me and drop me off but I don’t get the hint. I follow you back home. You get annoyed and start to resent me.

In the end you will throw rocks at me to get me to go away or try and pawn me off to someone else. You ask yourself why I am so attached when all you did was pet me. But I just keep following you around.

Then you throw a really big rock. I run off and keep running. The blood on my forehead means nothing because it is my heart that is wounded. I run out of town and run and run. I run until my legs give out.

Heartbroken a decision is made to bite the next person who tries to pet me. I mean, when I get up. when I can walk again. Just then my little story drifts off with another gust of wind high up on University Mountain.

Later, much later, I stumble into the parking lot where my car is. I look at my GPS. 13.9 miles and 4,500 feet of climbing in 4:05. Damn, it took me that long to just do a half marathon? No matter I will try again. I will keep running until my legs give out. Monday someone threw a really big rock. And I get it now.

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