But I Still Ride

 

The first ride of spring is always the hardest.

I push the pedals down and wait for my Purple Nightmare to tell me all her ailments.

But I still ride.

I ride layered, helmeted, purposefully but slow, listening to the breeze as it sings past my ear. I watch the cars in front and flanked at the sides of the street. I feel the sweet crunch of the gravel sift between my tires.

In the city I don’t fly, but that doesn’t matter as long as I’m getting somewhere.

From west to east the buildings grown height. The facades grow crisp and darker. I see fellow cyclists one-by-one join in the lane the farther I travel. My fingers are red from holding the handle bar too tight and having forgotten to wear gloves. The air nips inside my throat and a bruise forms at my seat. My knees ache from starting and stoping. My ears ring. The lock feels too heavy in my bag and the money feels too light. The streets are too narrow even when it’s just me.

But I still ride.

Carpal tunnel moves up my joints, far enough to reach my brain until my words stop. I’m out of practice. I get down on myself for not having maintained these sets of muscles. I fold and unfold, delete and self-edit.¬†Gradually the words feel more natural even though they don’t seem like mine yet. I tell myself it’s just like riding a bike.

In this city I don’t fly, but that doesn’t matter as long as I’m getting somewhere.

The first page is always the hardest. But I still write.

Advertisements