Choose a cliched phrase (“fit as a fiddle,” “think out of the box,” “running on empty,” etc.) and turn it around. Use the new meaning created by this reversal to fuel a poetic meditation.
I decided to use the phrase "Hell-bent for leather" which is sometimes shortened to "Hell-bent", meaning to be going very fast. I changed the phrase to "Heaven-bent" and slowed it down a bit.
He walked the trail upward ahead of me
taking the landscape one pace at a time,
slowing his stride imperceptibly to give me
the chance to catch up as I panted behind
"Why do you always pick the highest
climb you can find on the trail?" I asked,
wondering if I would get any reply this time
mentally counting the hundreds before
Patiently he climbed, taking time to breathe,
time to live and experience each moment
of the unhurried ascent, early afternoon sun
shining around his blonde locks like a halo
Puffing to catch up where I'd fallen back
I scrambled up a yet steeper, shorter path
only to stumble and scrape both knees
with a tight wince, but not a sound escaping
A solid hand reached out to help - I took it
gratefully after my rash moment, pain subsiding
the steady calm of him capturing me completely
"From up there we can touch the heavens."