Rumon CarterComment

Running As Art

Rumon CarterComment

Jennie,  making art from Vancouver Island's mountain heart to the sea, playing with poplars along the Bedwell Sound Trail

"Running is an activity that requires no language, or at least requires it in the way that art requires it—as incidental to its production. In fact, when pursued at its highest intensities, running makes language impossible. The memories of the best runs and races are always mute, the linguistic part of the brain having been abandoned for different modes of attunement. When we run, we watch the world with an eye that points in two directions. We look out, ahead to the horizon or downward to the passing terrain. We also look in, feeling our bodies, the rising surges of sensation, the drifting lines of feeling. Most of what is sensed and felt while running cannot be put into words but, instead, resonates: a string of the soul’s cello.” ~ Philosopher and Runner, Jeff Edmonds

Not 30-seconds after I posted my last entry, which included my observation "The problem is that at this point it’s still an answer articulated in the language of feeling. I don’t yet have words”  Vancouver Island mountain running hardman, Jeremy Clegg, pinged me with a little clearly-reasonable frustration:

“The answer to this question is so incredibly articulated in that piece I shared with you earlier this summer. [Ed. That’d be ~ 2 months ago. Whoops.] Allow me to at the very least, whet your appetite with an excerpt."

The morsel he sent me is the quote above. If it whet your appetite too (following Jeremy's note I finally sat down to read all of it in its resonant entirety), I highly recommend reading Jeff Edmond's "Running as Art: Tolerance, Temperament and the Ineffable," from the Journal of Speculative Philosophy...and doing so in rather less than the two months it took me. It definitely takes me back to the West Coast Trail, and that beautifully seductive question: Why?

Thank you to Jeremy for the original share. 

advocate / explorer / storyteller