Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Get up and win the race!

The Race
By: D. Groeberg
"Quit! Give up! You're beaten!"
They shout at me, and plead.
"There's too much against you now,
This time you can't succeed!"

And as I start to hang my head
In front of failure's face
My downward fall is broken by
The memory of a race.

And hope refils weakend will
As I recall the scene
For just the thought of that short race,
Rejuvenates my being.

A children's race, young boys, young men
How I remember well.
Excitement, sure! But also fear
It wasn't hard to tell.

They all lined up so full of hope
Each thought to win the race.
Or tie for first, or if not that,
At least take second place.

And fathers watched from off the side
Each cheering for his son
And each boy hoped to show his dad
That he would be the one

The whistle blew and off they went
Young hearts and hopes afire
To run and be the winning one
Was each young boy's desire.

And one boy in particular
Whose dad was in the crowd
Was running near the lead and thought
"My dad will be proud."

But as they speeded down the field
Across a shalllow dip,
The little boy who thought he'd win
Lost his step...and slipped,

Trying hard to catch himself
His hands flew out to brace
And mid the laughter of the crowd
He fell flat on his face!

So down he fell, and with his hope
He couldn't win it now
Embarrassed, sad, he only wished
To disappear somehow.

But as he fell, his dad stood up
And showed his anxious face
Which to the boy so clearly said:
"Get up and win the race."

He quickly rose, no damage done
Behind a bit, that's all.
And ran with all his mind and might
To make up for his fall.

So anxious to restore himself
To catch up and to win,
His mind went faster than his legs,
He slipped... and fell again.

He wished that he had quit before,
With only one disgrace,
"I'm hopeless as a runner now,
I shouldn't try to race."

But in the laughing crowd he searched,
And found his father's face
The steady look which said again,
"Get up and win the race."

So up he jumped to try again,
Ten yards behind the last.
If I'm to gain those yards he thought
I've got to move real fast.

Exerting everything he had
He regained eight or ten
But trying to catch the lead,
He slipped... and fell again!

Defeat he laid there silently
A tear dropped from his eye
"There's no sense running anymore
Three strikes! I'm out why try?"

The will to rise had disappeard
All hope had fled away
So far behind, so error prone
A loser all the way.

"I've lost, so what's the use, he thought
"I'll live with my disgrace"
But then he thought about his dad,
Who soon he'd have to face.

"Get up and echo sounded low,
Get up and take your place,
You were not meant for failure here,
Get up and win the race!"

With borrowed will "get up" it said
You haven't lost it all
For winning is no more than this
To rise each time you fall.

So up he rose to run once more
And with a new commit
He resolved not to win or lose,
At least he wouldn't quit!

So far behind the other's now,
The most he'd ever been
Still he gave it all he had,
And ran as though to win

Three times he'd fallen stumbling,
Three times he'd rose again
Too far behind to hope to win
He still ran to the end

They cheered the winning runer
As he crossed the line first place
Head high, and proud, and happy
No failing, no disgrace.

But when the fallen youngster,
Crossed the line last place
The crowd gave him the greater cheer
For finishing the race

And even though he came in last
With head bowed low, unproud,
You would have thought he won the race
To listen to the crowd

And to his dad he sadly said,
"I didn't do so well"
"To me you won," his father said
"You rose each time you fell"

And when things seem dark
And difficult to face
The memory of that little boy
Helps me to run my race.

For all of life is like that race
With ups and downs and all
And all you have to do to win
Is rise each time you fall.

"Quit! Give up! You're beaten!"
They still shout in my face
But another voice within me says,
"Get up and win the race!"

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