A poem about the game we love


Passion is born at three in the morning,
At the sound of an alarming buzz. 

Your bag is packed and your suit put on
Before you even wake up.

You choke down a breakfast and race out the door
To a car grinding and squealing, barely alive.

A storm blocks the path of most other journeyers
“But not I” you say as you trek through the snow.

The blizzard lights the darkened highway,
Falling from the heavens into your path.

If the whiteout doesn’t blind, then you’ll surely freeze
As the radioman sings thirty below.

You stare out the window in a trance,
Eyes fixed on the road you can’t see.

Your hands clasp the wheel,
Shivering, aching, but determined to keep you on the road

A sign up ahead grabs your attention:
“Beware of winter conditions”

A chuckle of sarcasm, then a grimace of thought
What if I don’t make it?

An abandoned car sits beside the road
Is it real, or are you just paranoid?

READ ALSO:  With Miller back, Sabres look to catch Habs for final playoff spot

A crash, a death, or just imagination.
You don’t stop to find out.

Your eyes strain to forbid sleep
Just a little longer. One blink, two, more…

Two glaring eyes appear from nowhere.
A sharp turn, a dear saved.

Your heart beats rapidly, fear but relief
Now you can stay awake

Suffering through hours, you reach your goal
A homely farm town rink

Where relief from a safely traveled journey
Turns to a groan of dismay.

 A notice on the door coyly reads:

A brief look back uncovers your car’s trail,
Three feet of snow, defeated by four tires.

You look for the tracks of
Others who made it.

But no one else made it.
You stand there, knee deep.

At the break of dawn you begin the journey home,
Leading a parade of snowplows.

The game is gone, the trip meaningless
But you feel a smirk on your face.

They called you crazy to go,
Just for a silly game.

William Butala, Fernie, B.C.