Halfway There

by Christine Adams Beckett

For My Own Two Annes

I take a load off with my

Own personal Robbie Robertson

Twice weekly these days,

Desperate for emotional health

And the strength to understand images

That surge through my

Subconscious and wakeful


I release The Weight. With knowledge and growing

Wisdom, but recognition that

My able, middle-aged body

Is inflicted by injuries that are


Tiny tears in my fibrous achilles tendon

Introduce my own Paris of Troy:

Repetitive stress and a yearning

For therapeutic purging, a drug

Surging something that feels

Like youth in my muscles and connective


I felt the twinge at mile five

Of a ten mile loop, forcing me to

Consider: how I’ll finish the other half.

To walk was prolonging the misery.

To run with a hobble

Was faster, and tricked me into thinking

My own mother might have been more successful

Than Thetis in dipping me into the River


My own personal maternal nymph, a Connecticut-born

Thetis, understood, intimately, all that could

Harm me, tried desperately to completely cover me

With protective, divine water. Yet she missed the same

Spot at the back of my own vulnerable


Contemplate a Shakespearean actor, seemingly

Floating upon the stage, who fights the natural tendency of

His feet, well hidden under theatrical crinoline

Working strenuously to masquerade his masculine


A duck floating effortlessly across a partially frozen lake

Subaqueously and exhaustively pumps his orange webbed feet.

A housewife presents her perfectly manicured cupcakes

To the collective table, yet had to yell at her own children,

Returning them to a state of submission,

To ice them.

I limped into mile eight and ignored the bearded man

In a pick-up, in plaid, “You were cookin’ by the State Park!

What happened?” I contemplated telling him that

I couldn’t hide my orange feet or my temper.

Instead, I respond:

Life happened, Lumberjack. But I’m just about to pull

Into Nazareth with my own personal

Robbie Robertson.

So I don’t need a ride.