Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE RACING CARS, by WILLIAM ROSE BENET



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THE RACING CARS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: The great cars careening come roaring round the curve
Last Line: Throbbed away through chaos that claimed the dragon breed!
Subject(s): Automobile Racing; Competition; Driving & Drivers; Sports; Race Car Driving


The great cars careening come roaring round the curve,
The dust clouds screening their onslaught as they swerve.
The dense crowd watching exhales a thrilling sigh,
Their quick breath catching as the cars boom by.

Speed on the straightaway—speed is what they need!
Speed down the level—at the banked curves, speed!
Their sharp staccato thunder awakes the hills to wonder
At the grimed, masked devils that drive the dragon breed.

I closed my eyes gazing, and saw them in my mind
Up the far hills blazing, and roaring up the wind,
On the star-roads leaping, black bulks that shoot and sway,—
Their fierce pace keeping on the fearful Milky Way.

Speed across the heavens—speed was their need!
Speed, with the meteors,—to Doom's gate, speed!
Their sharp staccato thunder shook sun and moon with wonder,
And the stars whirled wildly before the dragon breed.

The great cars careening went roaring round the world
With madness for their meaning 'mid wild dust swirled;
And faster still, and faster, their engines ripped and raced
While man who was their master must drive in haste.

Speed across the cities—speed was their need!
Speed down the valleys—up the high hills, speed!
Until, a dying wonder, their sharp staccato thunder
Throbbed away through chaos that claimed the dragon breed!





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