Melting Gold

A poem on the fall from grace of a Paralympic legend.

It was a false start:
her heart stopped,
a breath cut short
by the starter’s gun.
Once so gainly,
we saw a sprint halted
by a misstep of foul play.

Called to the starting block,
a head hangs low
wracked in stoic torment.
With steps retraced,
you ran the gamut,
dwelling on a breach
too ungamely for words.

Once, you fielded hubris,
astride such chutzpah.
Lauded for pace, showered
with praise, you soaked up
the adulation of millions.

This hard-won kudos is gone:
you appear before us,
a sullen figure,
faded, distant, aloof,
sporting a lope staggered
by an unforgivable hurdle
you’ll never surmount.

With dreams dashed,
the melting gold drips
into the smelting pot,
snaking its way down
the final furlong
of a stretch behind bars.

Humorous fiction writer, poet and novelist. Fond of satire. Interested in comic novels, black comedy and tales of satirical derring-do.

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