Monday, November 4, 2013

Primeval Hope, Vibrance, Optimism...and Ultrarunning

It's been awhile since I posted about something I saw on The Writer's Almanac.

This is a website that provides a free daily email about "things literary," but it's more, so much more.  It's nominally written by Garrison Keillor--at least it is he who reads the corresponding daily spot on National Public Radio that I sometimes catch. 

Today's feature, here, is a short poem from C. K. Williams, entitled Droplets.  It's often when people see poetry they can't hit that DELETE key fast enough.  But...if you like rain (and what Ultrarunner worth her or his salt doesn't?) you should click on over to read it, here.  It's short.

But today's focus isn't a Williams poem, it was a quote that he offered about his grandchildren that arrested me so:

I have three grandsons. Who, of course, are above average — way above average, needless to say. And when I'm with them I feel a sort of primeval hope, their vibrance, their optimism, the way they're so firmly in the world without thinking about it. When I'm not with them and I think about the world, I am not in a very hopeful mood. I'm in a very fearful mood.

Later today when I see Mister Tristan--the 5-year-old human being--I plan on loving the daylights out of him.  He won't know why, but I will.

There's the immortality that all of us somehow seek.

The link to Ultrarunning?  This sport is a long sojourn across many miles, sometimes vast distances, much like the journey of raising a child or grandchild.  The journey has highs and lows, times of triumph and times of disaster, physical depths and spiritual heights, all wrapped up in one neat little package.  Like the running philosopher Dr. George Sheehan used to say, sport--particularly running--is a metaphor for life.  All the elements are there.

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