The desire to constantly improve

My daughter wrote this poem after running 1000-meter repeats with her cross country team this morning. It was early; it was cold; and apparently is was inspiring.

Ever Racing
By Rachel Gitlin

Tired feet pound on the pavement
creating a steady beat one could dance to.
Hearts race driving blood through the bodies
creating an inner tempo that sets the dancers pace.
Air wheezes in and out of moist lips
creating a whispered chorus of singing voices.
Arms pump forward and back
creating a desire just out of reach.
Sweat drips across burning foreheads
creating a stench so sweetly repulsive.
Bodies ache and plead for a break
creating a pain that weeds out the weak.
Runners run, forever and always
creating a race that can never be won.

I asked her about the “race that can never be won” and she said, “I was thinking about how if you play a soccer game or a basketball game it eventually ends. But even after a race ends, you have a time. And next time you go running, you try to beat that time. You’re in a race that never ends.”

Leave a comment encourages a civil dialogue among its readers. We welcome your thoughtful comments.