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Showing posts from April, 2016

moss on trees—a barkley race report

“This isn’t what I trained for,” I muttered to myself. I reflected on endless hours postholing, on wrecking myself physically, day after day all winter long, in the endeavor to push my physical limits as far as I could. Instead of pushing, I was slowly schwacking back to a patch of trail following misconstrued instructions on a slightly mismarked map.

The ‘course’ would be impossible to navigate without prior course knowledge, as a ‘Barkley virgin’ (new to the race) runner, and alone for the first time. After losing precious time and putting space between “vets” and myself, I recognized that I was a leech. I was required to be a leech. I had to back off what my body desperately wanted to do and learn the course, slowly, with the closest vet to me. Moss was everywhere, encroaching the trunks of trees, decaying the rotting woods we trod through.

Moss on trees, lichen on stone. The only colors to thrive in an un-woken spring forest.

I thought of how I was like the moss, a parasitic fung…