They rise like a song on the air,
The dreams the fleet cast as prayer,
That issue from deep, in the clouds of their sleep,
Where they wrestle, with a blush, `gainst despair.
From the battle to quell our desires,
to the longing we put on display,
From the torch that burns with our passion,
to the ashes that time sweeps away:
Competition’s come a calling; we’ll be racing on the day.
Fine-tuned ‘neath a coach’s strict hand,
Now to test upon the starter’s command,
We’ll run to explore, the measure and more,
Our limits on foot upon the land.
The challenge is how we get through,
The effort as the distance accrues,
Past limits self-imposed, that often expose,
The paucity that is soon coming due.
We’ll all yearn for the power and the grace,
In our lunge for victory’s embrace,
Searching for the moment when we can dispatch our opponents,
And course on with an intransigent face.
Till the moment of truth is revealed,
As the vanquished are placed on their shields,
Where the anguish has wrought, not the moment they sought,
But one that cannot be repealed.
It’s then triumph nods in assent,
Acknowledging the ransom and rent,
Dues that were paid, to the service that made,
This time in the sun so clement.
We do it as a marker in time,
To declare that this moment is mine,
Beyond sorrow or wishing, or goals that go missing,
To stand in the spotlight sublime.
Ah, these days in the service of speed,
That we embrace with such urgency and need,
Give way to the mundane, and the means that sustain,
A life of firm measure not greed.
Till the sweep of our years lay behind,
Muted like a film for the blind,
Who have lost their way, in this age of decay,
Still grappling for the reward undefined.
But we’ll know the truth about glory,
Any more than a bit might well bore thee.
And leave you bereft like a child that’s been left,
To seek out the rest of the story.
Finally released from our ego’s hard stare,
We’ll walk in the evening’s soft air,
Where memories drift in hollows, and small steps are what follows,
The miles and trials and cares.
And we’ll recall these as the memories that hold,
Their typeface in italics and bold,
The ones that truly matter, not drift and then scatter,
To some reliquary both distant and cold.
Yes, this is the why and the wherefore,
To those who question what we’re here for,
It’s the reason that we race, then at the finish do embrace,
For the chase was the thing, nothing more.