New Poem: Last Leg

3-20-17a

Sometimes it seems just as you are getting things on track, some obstacle falls in your path. You can either let it stop you, or just find a route around, or over.

Last Leg

I cannot remember
what the start line
looked like,
nor the crack
of the starter’s gun.

That was so long ago.
Forever.
Blurred and smeared
by miles
and time.

Time that finds its way
into joints,
into muscles,
into lungs on fire
as the air comes
slow but fierce,
feeding oxygen
to blood pumped
by a raging heart.

My eyes sting
and water,
but still I see the road,
stretched and twisting,
my antagonist,
and my companion.

I have waited so long
for the sight of it:
the bright banner
with the word β€œFINISH”
all in capitals
to tell me
I have made it.

There it is,
bigger and whiter
than I could have
imagined,
beckoning
with loving arms.

Then comes the rumble
and I hardly
keep my footing
as the ground before me
revolts and rocks
and throws a massive wall
between the banner and I.

That raging heart
quiets for a moment
as despair and grief
grip it
and my soul.

A deep breath later,
however,
it rages again.

The race has changed
and I will no longer run,
but climb.

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