Robert Scott

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The Runner’s Cloudburst

Read me a story,
The Beginner’s Guide to Cross Country Running.

Yes, but first show me your heart.
It’s gotta have Love scrawled on it,
Laugh carved in it,
Desire and Determination in a pistols-at-dawn
Disagreement over who gets the lower bunk,
The last piece of wheat toast, and
Passion elbowing Complacency until her ribs crack
And she walks off alone, dejected.
It should have “Ask Me Anything” splashed about like
Travel stickers on a steamer trunk alongside
Photos of Dawn and Twilight in their finest,
Worn corners carefully affixed with torn bits of masking tape.
I wanna see Nature tattooed on atria in youthful fonts, and
Enough Red Wine spilled over ventricles to inspire
Jesus to commit desultory, capricious miracles
At a tent revival hootenanny for the righteous;
While Hope, Spirit, Purity, and Contentment take turns
Spray painting their name in bawdy capital letters
Over smooth muscle
For lawyers, lovers, losers, lazy liars,
Broken brokers, bullies, bullshitters, and bastards
To read
As you glide by,
Oblivious, wrinkle-free,
Breathing Peace, ocean breeze and
Exhaling three degrees of loss, loneliness and fear.

Sounds like a good story.
Then we’ll run.

© 2017 Robert Scott

Despite three decades of nagging orthopedic injuries, Robert Scott is an aging cross country runner who demonstrates downright inconsistent social skills on weeks when he fails to log at least 30 miles in the woods.  Information on his novels, stories, and poems is available at

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