I ran, I ran so far away
Oh how far I ran that day
No obstacles came my way
Before me a long path lay.
I did not in the slightest care
that the path was a circle
I could go as fast as a hare
or as slow as a turtle
and it would make no difference
How fast or slow I run
speed is of no consequence
The reason? There is but one:
I have to run as far as I can
An insidious curse has been placed upon me
The destination is not important
But I would die if not for the journey
There is a demon in my chest
And it will not let me rest
Until I have seen the whole road
Achieved that state of beast mode
It is momentum that cannot last
A state that is ludicrously fast
It lets you move at a speed
Sure to put you in the lead
But this is impossible to attain
I wanted it once, if only for fame
I travelled to see the speed king
Demanded that he tell me one thing
How on earth I run that fast
when my muscles will not last
The speed is physically impossible
making it extremely desirable
This was a god whose time I was wasting
He laughed and set the ground shaking
“You would have to earn it, this is MY power
I am not Prometheus. I will not drop the fire”
I should have backed down
But instead I wore a frown
“I can do anything you demand
Run on water, swim on sand
I have flown without wings
Around the devil I run rings
I have seen the center of this earth
and I understand life’s true worth.
There is nothing that I fear
I have kept my enemies near
I am as powerful as the thunder
I could have you torn asunder
Unless you grant me my only wish
you will become inferior to a fish
And you know I will make sure of it
When delivering revenge I do not quit”
Only then did I see my mistake
I gasped and turned to escape.
The sky exploded the clouds came down
Turning sepia, everything went brown.
The sea rushed towards me
A wave of a million swords
Each one laughing with glee
Music of the most evil chords
The mountains rose higher
The forests moved around
The deserts became fire
Heaven fell to the ground
I was swept up onto a rock
Higher then all else I perched
So there I did take stock
Below me reality lurched.
The voice returned, it made me tremble
It was so powerful, and too terrible.
“You are nothing to the likes of me!
You dare question my authority?”
This was overwhelming. He was so strong
If I keep this up I’ll be dead before long.
Tears fell, I knew this was the end
I collapsed to the floor, my legs didn’t bend.
Suddenly there was silence
But his voice was in my head
It whispered away my defiance
And swept out all my dread.
“You want to run that fast
Even if your muscles won’t last?
I will not give up the secret
You yourself must go and find it
You must run for all eternity
Faster then me? Uncertainty.
But run hard enough and you will find
The thing that has plagued your mind
But I have made it harder to win
For you now have a demon within.
You will not stop you will not rest
until you have accomplished the quest.
But have some fun, enjoy the journey
Of beautiful things you will see many.
Now go and run as far as you can
Never forget that you are just a man.”
I knew what I had to do
Run and run over fields of blue
Run up mountains run down stairs
Run through the evilest of lairs.
Running and running until I see
The revelation that sets me free
The secret of travelling so fast
That future becomes present and past.
But this demon prevents all
It is a great physical wall
That stops me from running fast
Because my chest becomes glass
Just that extra bit of speed
and my innards will shatter
Every time I feed the need
That demon makes me splatter.
How can I discover the answer
when I cannot run like a panther?
Beast mode was already hard enough
Now I’m completely out of puff
But I know how to beat my demon
I will put an end to his screaming
If I simply run for a long time
This will remove his fowl grime.
Once he’s gone I will be free
I will run at full capacity
And at that speed I will find out
the elusive secret without a doubt!
Until then I must wander and roam
I must run. And run without a groan.
Speed does not matter, only distance
I’ll give this demon full resistance.
I mark that day down in my head
That day I could have been dead
I ran far, I did not wait
So far the trip has been great
I’ve seen a lot since then
and I would do it all again
The demon still lives inside
And I almost don’t mind.
That demon is why I’ve seen all this
He’s the reason that I run in bliss
Through the fields of red snow
Caves where we don’t normally go
The great pools of starlight
The rolling hills of fire
Coal heaps that shine bright
The sacred sun spire
Out of the realm eternal
and into the lair infernal
The green beaches of purgatory
The places found in a story
I don’t really care where it is I go
When I run the world puts on a show
Why run fast when there’s so much to see?
I’m enjoying this endless journey.
But at some point I will beat
the demon sticking to my feet.
It is my mission to run this road
at the speed known as beast mode
I will take this assignment
with no hesitation
The journey is more important
than the destination
Alex Herlihy – 2009