Excerpt for Simple Rhythms: Poetry for Runners by , available in its entirety at Smashwords

Simple Rhythms

Poetry for Runners

Ray Charbonneau

Copyright 2017 by Ray Charbonneau

First Edition

Also by Ray Charbonneau:

Chasing the Runner’s High

R is for Running

Overthinking the Marathon

Idle Feet Do the Devil’s Work

The 27th Mile (editor)

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Book Design: Y42K Publishing Services


For race directors,

everyone who has ever volunteered to help at a race,

and everyone who’s helped put on a group run.

And as always, for Ruth

Table of Contents


Running is a simple and basic activity. One foot in front of the other, pounding out a rhythmic beat in 2/4 time. Often, traditional Western poetry also consists of feet laid out one after another. Coincidence? I think not.

Poetry isn’t always as simple as running, but running does give you time to think, and anything that you do regularly can take on layers of meaning. It was Shakespeare that wrote, “Bid me run, and I will strive with things impossible.”

Of course, I’m no Shakespeare. Even so, I hope you find this collection to be worth lingering over, like a long, slow run with friends.

Thanks for reading,


“Running track and cross-country turned out to be important to my life. Training hard, not quitting even when you were dead tired, gave me a discipline that has stayed with me for the rest of my life.”

-Senator Bernie Sanders

Simple Rhythms

I run for ease, I run thru pain

I run for health, and to stay thin

It clears the noise out from my brain

It helps me test the shape I’m in

I run alone, I run in groups

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