At the Prep Stage

28 May 2017

Oars rowed hard the slap
of the water,
though, setting out, the hope
had been water with
the surface of glass,
water with the oars, not against,
water that drew forward
the scull through the course.

To ace the course
had been the objective.
But the weather had thrown
a pop quiz.  ‘Ace that,’
it seemed to mock,
the rowers become Poppy Heads
carved on the air, depictions
carved out of the ephemeral,
teaching us what lesson?

‘Shit!,’ was heard spoken,
in frustration, between gasps,
air become the champagne of quaffs.
And all this was
mere warm-up to the meet,
making the athletes feel stripped
of more than just incentive.

Philip Kuepper
(15 May 2017)

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