Defeat! she lay there silently, a tear dropped from her eye,
“There’s no sense running anymore – three strikes and I’m out – why try?
The will to rise has disappeared, all hope had fled away,
so far behind, so error prone, closer all the way
“I’ve lost,. so what’s the use,” she thought, “I’ll live with my disgrace.”
But then she thought about her dad who soon she’d have to face.
“Get up,” an echo sounded low, “get up and take your place.
You were not meant for failure here, so get up and win the race.”
With borrowed will, “Get up!” it said, “You haven’t lost at all,
for winning is not more than this, to rise each time you fall.”
So she rose to win once more, and with new commitment
she resolved to win or lose, at least she wouldn’t quit.
So far behind the others now, the most she’d ever been,
still she gave it all she had, and ran as though to win.
Three times she’d fallen stumbling, three times she rose again.
They cheered the winning runner as she crossed.
First place, head high, proud and happy, no falling, no disgrace.
But when the fallen runner crossed the line, last place,
the crowd gave her the greater cheer for finishing the race.
And even though she came in last, with head bowed low, unproud.
You would have thought she won the race, to listen to the crowd.
And to her dad she sadly said, “I didn’t do well.”
“To me, you won,” her father said, “you rose each time you fell.”
And now when things seem dark and hard and difficult to face,
the memory of that runner helps me in my own race.
For all of life is like that race, with ups and downs and all.
“Quit! Give up, you’re beaten,” they will shout in my face.
But another voice within me says, “Get up and win that race!”