BY WILLIAM BLAIR
Here I start my first race,
The water is warm and familiar as my arms and feet sail and speed ahead;
An exhilarating rush of euphoria.
Here I stand, just as before,
As I hear the familiar sound, feel the familiar water, the familiar euphoria,
And swim, only swim.
Here I stand on the podium, Here I learn to swim again,
The cold water envelops and enfolds,
My strokes slice and segment,
My kicks propel and press.
Here I strive for the wall,
The barrier of my pain,
As my slender body struggles through the unrelenting cold water.
Here I spend countless hours struggling and straining,
My lungs burn, my vision is hazy, my legs and arms sore,
But … I love it.
The medal around my neck, my team cheering;
I remember my past, the struggles, the disappointments,
But now only happiness effuses from my smiling face.