The Big Race is my contribution to capitalism poetry, a reflection on the value and ethics of free market rules.
The Big Race
Race day brings swarms of 7.7 billion runners, limpers, jumpers,
hoppers, one-leggeds, joggers, sprinters, crawlers,
wheel-chair-bounds, and dead-weights.
Mixed weather at the starting line, with sweltering heat, biting
frost, piercing hail, leaden showers, mild breezes, balmy
sunshine, and tepid temperatures painting the 7.7 billion
Onlookers discover a hit-and-miss medley of footwear among
footed competitors, air-cushioned breathables alongside
dirty protruding toes, itchy sweaters besides sunburnt or
To call some athletes would be in bad taste, those at the back
of the field, behind the 7.6999999 billion, scrambling for a
foothold. As for the legless, some are blessed with crutches,
others are not.
Blood, tear, and sweat-costing brawls about hunger pangs and
homes or the lack thereof break out hither and thither.
Meanwhile, the starting line is smooth and fair - free passage
for 7.7 billion pros and rookies.
At the bang of the gun, they're off, the field cut at once,
billions dropping like flies before the first hurdle from
pre-race exertions, blisters, deadweight equipment,
leglessness, balls and chains or sloth.
An unruly mob of spectators hurls power snacks and energy
drinks at the foot-cushioned frontrunners wearing non-sweat
running gear, soon coasting toward the finish line. When they
tire a little, they hitch a rest on a bunch of no-hopers.
Sponsors bestow them with enviable endorsements like foot rubs
and shoulder massages or cool sponges to the forehead.
Buoyancy-boasted and basking in tough-training-rewards, the last
few rivals dig deep, not shy of a dirty trick or two.
One or two teeth-grinding, heel-digging once-amateurs
latch onto the glory but never quite catch up. The red ribbon in
sight ignites the final sprint to draw out the winner.
Gloating to a prominent reporter before getting his trophy, the
champion applauds splendid organisation, fair-play, and credits
gruelling preparatory work. The first handful of losers seethe
a little over a glass of prosecco.
As for the bulk of the 7.7 billion, some vow to try harder, some
cry foul-play, some despair and die.