Sunday, July 20, 2014

Round of 8

Turning in a slip and getting back
--Rather than another assignation--
A half sheet and a pencil
An invitation to reflect
  • Where I’m from
  • How long the journey to this point
  • Who coaxed me along

And then the kicker:
“Best results so far”
(A query guaranteed to
Throw me off my game)

First of all, what’s “best?”
First in a cozy local competition, with little to contest?
Dead last in Div IA—a newly minted C, abashed, astounded that
I even dared to try?
The “Friend of Fencing” medal awarded by my college coach (himself a living legend in the sport)?
My growing list of thirds from facing these same friends and foes?

I want to say “Today. Today exceeds the rest.”
Maybe by the time you read this slip
I’ve triumphed three more times
Maybe even now I’m
Clutching gold, or
At least, have trod the finals strip

In any case, why ask?
What’s past is past
The last thing I need now
Is to be snagged by expectations
Amped up by ambition to excel

I need to pee
I need to check my blades
I need to
Breathe and take a moment to reflect

So sure, whatever, scribble in some dates and places
Maybe get it right
And if it’s slightly off, remember that my thoughts are not on
Autobiographic stats
My focus is on
Scripting future fictions

Hoping they come true

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Varieties of Coaches

Those who give minute instructions
Orchestrating every move

Those who hurl abuse
Taking every failure as a
Personal affront

Those who shrug, and turn away
As soon as things go south

Those who live and breathe to
Argue with the ref
Or mutter, bark and shout
In Babelicious tongues

The ones, over-committed, who
Are doomed to dash between a dozen strips

And mine, parked in my line of sight
Talking on his phone
To someone else’s mom
Sometimes giving signals that I swear
I’ve never seen before
Gesturing as if he’s
Trying to land a plane
Distracting me from what is going on
Upon the strip, which sometimes
Is exactly what I need

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Lost…& Found

My breath
Which fled the moment that I went on guard
My equanimity
Which seems to need some oxygen to thrive
Several touches
Due to the above

Plan B
Premised on a tempo fully half my normal speed
In finding youth can be beguiled by deliberate pace
My knickers

Which, turns out, were in the bottom of my bag