Applause

Applause

I’ve been here many times,
as their childhood has flown past

Sitting alone in the crowd
smiling, and having a blast
A proud, dedicated single parent
gathering memories that will last

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She weaves her way through a defense

that had previously refused to yield
Deft footwork and bursts of speed
guide her down the field
I spring from the edge of my seat
as a late victory is sealed

My legs, energized by her exploit
My lungs, filled with a rush of air
An abrupt acknowledgment of her endeavor
as I quickly rise up from my chair
Emphatic words in a father’s approval
ecstatic to be right there

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I see my teenage powerhouse
as she tumbles across the floor
A round-off and a back handspring
My gasp, and then a perfect two more
An exalted, frightening, wonderful feeling
that resonates to my core

My stomach, churning when she jumps
My heart, leaping when she lands
The uniquely exhilarating anguish
that any parent understands
Proud, as I put down the camera
to free up my hands

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The impetus for my applause
Feats that constantly astound
No urge to look beside me
No need to look around
My two hands, together in the crowd
making their own sound


It seems to me that it’s a graceful gazelle
that suddenly emerges from the pack
Anticipating the exact moment
from my spot along the track
As she glides around the final curve
the others get further and further back

My mind, racing with her to the finish
My senses, tingling from the start
The extent of her accomplishments
matching the size of her heart
Knowing the work ethic and the effort
that always set her apart

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Being early gets me a good seat
Dead center, given the chance
Oblivious of my surroundings
I listen to her play, I watch her dance
Happily lost, inside of myself
My own choice, my soul circumstance

My eyes, no matter what her stage
My ears, for any of the bands
The selfish, singular focus
that any parent understands
Proud, as I put the program down
to free up my hands

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The inspiration for my applause
Daughters who constantly astound
No urge to look beside me
No need to look around
My t
wo hands, together in the crowd
making their own sound


Sitting alone, in the crowd

as each new season has passed
Thankful for each new memory
as time ticks by so fast
Never wondering, or worrying,
if this one will be the last

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Kick

 

Kick
Striding toward your goals
Always the first to arrive
Always the last to leave
Always giving your best…  
Going the extra yard
to separate from the rest

Staying with the group,
you are comfortable where you are.
With no urgency to take the lead,

you settle into fourth instead.
Prepared, mentally and physically,
for your chance to move ahead.
Sensing it in the pace,

you anticipate the moment.
  Your instincts tell you when,
  and they always seem to know.
I can just barely get the words out,
“Here she comes. Watch her go.”

Kick
Seizing the moment,
and having what it will take
Kick
Seeing the opportunity,
and leaving the rest in your wake
Kick
The training
The discipline
One last rep
One more lap
Kick
Knowing you have enough
to close the gap

Prepared for your success
Hours in the weight room
Hours in the gym
Hours on the track…
Building up the resolve,
to separate from the pack


Striving for your most

Your work ethic
Your ambition
Your fight…
An inward strength that emerges,
with all of its might

With a glance to your right,
you make your move to the outside.
  There is one remaining curve,
and you have one remaining burst.
   Six or seven powerful strides
take you from fourth to first.
You accelerate through the finish
and you glide to a stop.
Hands on your hips,
you are tired and content.
Satisfied with your preparation,
and the rush of how it went.

Kick
Brash and self-certain
Confident, bordering on bold
Kick
I’ve seen it many times
and it never gets old
Kick
The speed
The stamina
One last push
One more gear
Kick
All of the grit and guts
that got you here

You leave it all out there
Your determination
Your heart
Your will…
Just when it all seems spent,
you get stronger still

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