I Run

I talk myself into my run

one foot in front of the other

climbing upwards challenged

laboring a little

just enough to remind me

my humanness

I pass birds calling

aged trees standing still

among the wood line

while wild brown-eyed susans

wink in sway with a soft wind

a wind I need to release me

I do not stop until the trail ends

copyrighted:   2017 CMM 

Another Place

I walk upon the canvas

the gray and green elephants 

walk around me. 

Always in dimensional lights

of bright and then dim

the gathering of familiar faces

was all that I could see. 

I look to see upstairs to find

and you were not there. 

I continued down the stairs 

the face of your adversary 

standing fatter and pompous.

A distant call was hung into space

I heard the gritty sound of ignorance,

I heard the sound of disgrace.

I never saw but knew.

I asked this fatter one where,

where were you? 

He turned to another and gave directions

I could no longer contain the pain,

as I beat upon his chest and

cried with years of disdain…  

Copyrighted:  CMM 2016img_1051


I gather grit

I gather me

A day of solitude

a day succeed

Stones and pebbles

in my path

mud and slides

become my wrath

I listen to my body

labors to go on

I do not stop

the road is long

My head is leading

through the race

my legs continue

to keep the pace

Times I feel faint

and others strong

but I did endure

I did belong.

©  CMM   2015

Half Marathon  (13.2  Battery went dead on my run)

Half Marathon
(13.2 Battery went dead on my run)

Bleached white and muted grey wood line

Covered with spots of unthawed snow,

Patches of green grass left from summer.

The smoky grey morning clouds hang heavy

As the morning light breaks into a shadow cast.

Winter has taken hold into arctic temperatures

And still nature stays attentive to coming storms.

Sitting at my desk I am taken aback as one brave

Bird dares to break the silence and sing of spring


A slip, a footing,

both pent against the wedge of panic’s doom.

A slice of electrical surge

crippling my stance.

Yanking the distorted foot

out of its pitted doom,

it stops me,

I wait.

A balance of consciousness,

a throbbing searing surge,

I step broken

one in front of the other.

Stepping into the climb,

one step, then two; more.

Top of the stairs,

a morose pause, then endurance—

I continue on to class.


© Christine McNeill-Matteson  2000


The Ride

I look into his face,
the eyes of steely black,
knowing for him to survive,
I must mount his back.
It is now him and me
at the bottom of the incline.
This sturdy force, this muscled mass,
must take upon his climb.
I cross over his strengthen barren back,
one I’ve known so well,
together we will climb this cliff,
the cliff from where he fell.
I lay my head on his hair,smelling the sweat of the day.
I tilt forward in his lead,
as he surely leads the way.Insignificant and frail I feel,
a difference of his strength and me,
the power harbored in his will,
the struggle that sets us free.

His body welcomes me,
I lean into it, shouldering me he tows.
He pulls his hoofs against the stones
his step is strong but slow.

Blending as one in determination
motion of the trial we meet,
sound of his hoofs, his labored breath,
tropical winds bring the heat.

WE finally reach this upward climb,
and once again we are still.
Silent trust, this twosome ride
from the power of his will.

I slide and leave this gallant hero,
with his challenge met.
A euphoric morning, the power of the ride,
the ride I will never forget.

Copyrighted: CMM 1996

Twilight’s Run

The sparrow’s flight seems still against the wind,
as the buzzard’s wings-span soars in the skies that have no end.
Evening draws its shade of cool indigo among the grays,
the shuffling sounds my feet are paced in a cadence  sway.
I struggle against the pull as up hill one foot in front of the lead,
knowing at the top I will breathe easier from the need.
A momentous time this lone and silence evening’s best,
without noise a red tail hawk seen on her nest.
Sun’s warm cast has faded into a twilight’s glow,
while in the course and across the ridge I still have miles to go.
Labored breath I listen, as though it is outside of me,
I glance, the late summer leaves shadows line the trees.
I continue on as miles left behind darken without sun,
appearing at the early twilight , the journey will soon be done.
Chilled with damp t-shirt and brackish coated skin,
I know the feeling only runners feel, when the distance soon will end.
©  CMM  2013