Without sounding to morbid, I’ve written a sequel to the “Concrete Shoes’ poem from the other day. (See Post #1292). There’s obviously still a lot of frustration in once again finding relative comfort when I pound the pavement every day. Clearly, there’s a lot of wear and tear when your feet meet the street, as mine have after many years of running. I expect it to be challenging, but instead it continues to be uncomfortable. It also occurred to me that I was relating it to a Mafia-like burial known as putting the victim in concrete shoes, cement shoes, or a Chicago overcoat. In a way, I guess I’m a glutton for punishment but it’s not in me to simply stop. Consequently, I’m changing my analogy from shoes to slippers, hoping that I can soon “slip” out of this “heavy” funk. 

Concrete Slippers

I feel my body,
Just might crack.
If you wound up,
And took a whack.

I’m like a statue,
Stuck in place.
I’m lucky to move,
Let alone race.

I already lack.
Laboring as if there’s,
A piano on my back.

Feet like bricks,
Muscles tight.
Something’s wrong,
I’m far from right.

Is it old age?
Or medication?
My concrete feet,
Need a vacation.

I run like molasses,
My springs are shot.
Calves and thighs,
Have gone to pot.

Energy low,
Little drive.
I’m moving forward,
But may never arrive.

I’ve tried new shoes,
A heating pad.
Should I respond,
To a Low-T ad?

Caffeine or Energy drinks,
Might give me a boost?
But I’d rather sit back,
On my retirement roost.

Yet, every day,
I beat the street.
With cement slippers,
On my feet.

Copyright 2010 johnstonwrites.com

I thought about my days playing media league slow-pitch softball and the speed at which I could run the bases. I was once a track team sprinter who dreaded having to run more than 100 yards. I prided myself on a quick start, but would fade badly after about 60 yards, yielding to those who finished strong. It was disappointing when the 60-yard dash was eliminated from inter-school competition, so I tried to switch to the 60-yard hurtles. I just didn’t have the spring in my legs or the form to effectively compete. Vertical leap was never one of my strong-points. I avoided the mile run like the plague, let alone 5,000 meters, and it wasn’t until my late 20’s that I tried my hand at distance running. The primary motivation was to run a marathon, and I accomplished it at a respectable 8-minute mile pace. Training for it was much harder than doing it, so after the second time it was been-there-done-that. At 68 years of age, my current average mile time has deteriorated to an embarrassing twelve minutes. I try to pick up the speed but anymore it feels like I’m wearing a Chicago overcoat and concrete shoes, along with a virus-proof cement mask.