Posts Tagged ‘bicycles


O Bus Driver

O Bus Driver,
How easy it would be to fall in love with you.
Punctual, dependable, compassionate-
So many of the things I’ve been taught to look for in a man.
Guiding this carriage along its designated route,
Up streets and down, stopping at the appointed places,
Greeting each new guest with respect and humor.
Does it ever grow tedious? Do you feel the need to slink
The bus down an alley? Take the freeway exit and keep going?
Stage an impromptu tour of the places visiting celebrities
Breathtakingly, rioutously vomited up their overindulgence
Of the local microbrews? Wherever you’re going, take me with you.
O Barista,
With your memory for who ordered this or that and which
Drink should be half-caf and which skim,
You would never forget my birthday or where we first met
Or the song we were dancing to at your niece’s wedding
When I got goosebumps. Your steps behind the counter are
So sure and so deft, you would be a great dancer.
I would thrill to see the designs you make for me in the crema
Each morning and each evening I would kiss away the hurt
From the places you burned yourself with the steam.
Pizza-maker my Pizza-maker,
I see you shaping the dough, kneading, rolling, tugging gently.
I know my flesh would be like new clay in your strong hands;
I grow hypnotized watching them until with split-second perfection
You toss the dough into the air and catch it.
A shaft of light, diffused by your raised arm, touches your forehead,
Gilding a trickle of sweat. It is Alph, the sacred river and
I am already in love with you.
And you, Meter Man, risking derision and abuse to bring order to our block;
Old Woman, sweeping the leaves from before your storefront,
And plucking them from the flowerbeds;
And the Old Man coming into the shop, serenading us,
“Somewhere Over the Rainbow” flows out from him, the rich timbre of his voice
Paying false to his fragile bones;
O Bicyclist,
You show such care: checking the lock twice, arranging the chain just so,
Giving your steed a final reluctant pat, looking back
Even after you’ve tucked a wheel under your arm and walked away.
I know you would take good care of me too
And I would love you all the more for it; we would love each other.
But it’s still the beginning of February and I should finish this coffee before it grows cold.


Saturday 4:30

Skateboard clacks by on dry pavement.
Boys on bicycles and boys running, calling to each other in the street.
Lawnmower coughs then thrums next door.
Sun coruscates through the blinds;
Leafy shadows on the comforter.
Stiff cotton sheets replace snuggly flannels.
Stretching my toes way out, I can almost
Touch the amiable space your body made
On afternoons like this.



When I saw the young men, dressed in black and mounted on bicycles, from the opposite side of the intersection
My first thought was that they must be Mormon missionaries;
Who else but someone with a mission from God would be riding in such a downpour?
I figured they’d been sent to ask us to turn away from our sins, to repent so God would stop the rain from falling some time before we reached the forty days/forty nights mark.
As we drew closer, I saw they were teenaged boys wearing black hoodies, riding unhelmeted and unhatted
With no protection from either the weather or the dangers of the road
And instead of being on a mission of redemption
They were splashing at high speed through the inches deep puddles along the roadside bent on a reckless quest for air, water, and thrills