Monday, March 7, 2011


I keep a pile of food related pulled out magazine articles on my computer desk - things I find amusing or interesting to share with you. I pulled out the messy stack and the third page showed an image of a middle aged, gray haired man lifting free weights with the huge slogan "ARE YOU KIDDING YOURSELF?" overpowering the scene in bold blue lettering. I expected to find a food related article on the back, but all the flip side contained were the 'important' facts about the drug Lipitor.

It must have gotten pulled out with some other article, but I couldn't help but wonder if this page stood as a Freudian message from inner critic. "ARE YOU KIDDING YOURSELF?" a pretty good mantra for the cynic inside. I can't stand that chick, but she has a point.

When there are so many people out there in the world with all the talent and determination imaginable (and probably no kids, husbands/wives, houses that seem to get bigger every time they have to clean them...) I get to wondering if my meager time, questionable skills, and wandering eye for the next point of interest/obsession will ever get me anywhere.

I woke up before dawn this morning to pounding rain. Downstairs I turned on the tea kettle, and saw a streak fly by on the car-free road behind my house. The road dead-ends and I waited for the streak to come back again - wanting to see what kind of maniac was out there in the dark rain at 5 am.

A woman, very fit, probably about forty, and a little white dog were running hard, 8 or 9 miles per hour, through the cold rain. What makes her different from me?

I am too easily allured by the beguiling quit demon. At the push-through point, that inner critic of mine starts to sneak up, telling me that I will not may just be easier, less wasteful of time and energy, to stop trying (or more bluntly, to quote the Lipitor add: Are you kidding yourself??). That early morning runner got her butt, and her dog's butt, out the door before the sun, in a freezing downpour.

What does if feel like to say "NO! I am NOT kidding myself you jerk, so back off"?
So at that moment, I got my pen and began to write again.

I have to fight that critic, a lot. I may get knocked out more often than I want to...but sometimes I get the nerve to say SHUT UP! and throw her a left hook. The anonymous runner in the rain inspired me to fight back. This is for her.


Splashing speed
The heavy sodden shoes
and fierce gusts
cannot weigh her down

A small white dog
runs a few paces ahead
while rumbling rain fights
unrelenting brick brown mud
for his coat,
again and again

A dark dawn
Cold pounding of pavement
marks her determination
to beat the drumming drops,
falling faster than the clock ticks away
on her moment, as a pulsing flash,
under the water sheets and black blubbering clouds

I watch her from a warm window,
steaming pomegranate tea
hot in my hand,
and wonder where to find
dedication like

*The site is still down...hopefully it will be fixed soon. In the mean time I will be focusing on getting my fingers to the keyboard here at Owl Cook. Thanks for your continued support! 


Anonymous said...

you go girl! good to remember we can filter our own thoughts. Time and space are all relative, as are what we can do with them. thank you :))

Ashley said...

I think that's the human condition, plain and simple... beautiful poem. I see you getting your MFA in creative writing, my dear. Lots of love, Ashley