Monday, August 23, 2010

The Purple Runner

I am offering this, the 500th post on my blog, as thanks to members of Team in Training - from Richmond, from all over Virginia, and from all over the USA and Canada - who will be competing in the Rock 'N' Roll Half Marathon in Virginia Beach on September 5 and in the Nation's Triathlon in Washington DC on September 12. You guys rock, and anyone who has dealt with cancer who learns what you are doing will give thanks for your sacrifice and hard work. Here is my humble offering, as a cancer survivor, in appreciation and recognition of your efforts:

"The Purple Runner"

In pre-dawn darkness, she stumbles from bed
She splashes cold water all over her face
She tries to remember the things her coach said
As she goes out to train for her upcoming race

The house is all quiet in the dead of the night
But he tosses and turns, wide awake in his bed
For he’ll receive chemo just after first light
And the pit of his stomach is filled with deep dread

It’s already hot as she runs down the street
Sweat flows down slowly and drips off of her nose
Lately she has had lots of pain in her feet
And she dislikes the feel of skin sticking to clothes

The poison flows in with a slow drip-drip-drip
His cancer is proving elusive to treat
Sometimes he's afraid that he is losing his grip
And he's feeling worn out and so totally beat

As the distance piles up she runs with a slight limp
"Just have hang in there a mile or two more"
Thoughts of ill people make her feel like a wimp
As she remembers who she is doing this for

The doc grimly walks in, expressing his fears
But he says “There’s more cures just ‘round the bend
So keep hanging on, maybe one or two years
And try to stay calm – that’s what I recommend.”

She runs past the sign for the medical center
Ignoring tired legs, she presses on and endures
She thinks of ideas to discuss with her mentor
To raise some more money for much needed cures

He gets in his car and moves slowly along
And drives by a young runner in her drenched purple shirt
"Will I run once again? Will I ever feel strong?
Or will I end up under six feet of dirt?"

Her sore feet have gotten her to her last mile
She is struggling a bit so she drops down her pace
She’s exhausted and hot, but she thinks with a smile
This is not about running – for a cure I race!

As he passes her by, he gives one last glance
On the front of her shirt, he reads “TNT”
He smiles as he thinks “I still have a chance!
That runner is racing for a cure for me!

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