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”—we all, together, remember how far we have come and how much distance would be wasted if we were to turn back. We should at least dignify how far we have come by going a bit further. The roar seems to come from somewhere low, under the trees, seething in the ground.We are reassured that our destination, the river, lies just ahead.The path is beginning to fade in and out, becoming threadbare as we continue. Perhaps none of us ever enjoyed it, even early on when our legs were fresh.
It is distinguished by its almost limitless range of inspiration, drawing from popular genres such as pop, rock, jazz, hip hop, reggae and countless others.
It is known to fuse two or more genres together, alongside strong visual, fashion and dance elements.
They are utterly still, as if they will never move and never be found again, as if they are items accidentally dropped from a pocket, falling farther and farther behind us now.
Ashleigh Young is a poet and essayist living in Wellington, New Zealand.
The question ripples up and down the chain of walkers, and one or two people raise the serious possibility of turning back right now.
Their voices are bright with certainty, seeming almost to hold apart the foliage we are struggling through, making our way easier for a moment.
Author Rebecca Solnit, whose book Paleontologists, anthropologists, and anatomists have launched a passionate and often partisan argument over when and why the ancestral ape got up on its hind legs and walked so long that its body became our upright, two-legged, striding body.
They were the philosophers of walking I had been looking for, speculating endlessly about what each bodily shape says about function and about how those forms and functions eventually added up to our humanity — though what that humanity consists of is equally debatable.
We keep our eyes on the back of the person in front of us, whose leg hairs are aquiver with burrs. We will reach the river sooner now that we have not stopped.
From time to time, we imagine ourselves in a clearing, sitting on our humped packs in the shade—past selves who stopped to rest back there.