"First Call"

May 15, 2011
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“First call four-hundred meter,”
The loud speaker blares overhead.
Butterflies flitter in my stomach,
A wave of fear cascades on the shores
Of my brain, as I nervously
Lace up my track spikes.

“Final call four-hundred meter,
Runners, please make your way to the track.”
Good lucks bounce
Unappreciated and unreturned through the still air.
With the starting blocks I walk into battle
Like a soldier with his gun.

“On your marks.”
Inch by inch,
I move myself into the starting position.
Earth quakes in my lane,
My whole body shakes
My thoughts echo my coach’s reminders:
“Load your heels.”
“Shoulders over hands.”
“Butt up.”

“Get Set.”
The starter raises his gun,
Rubber daggers pierce my hands.
My fingers ache from the pressure of my body.
Like a flood,
Negative thoughts pour into my mind.
“What if I lose?”
“I can’t come in last.”
“What if he beats me?”
“Why do I even do track?”


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