Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Bike

Early Sunday morning,
The weather hesitates.
So do I.

I stand in the empty street.
There's a fine rain.
The bike ride home takes half an hour.
Twenty minutes if I go fast.
I rarely do.

Will the rain stop?
Grow heavier?
Does it matter?

I look at the bike station.
There's only one bike left.
I slowly walk towards it,
Still thinking about the rain,
Staring at the sky,
Using my non-existent knowledge of meteorology
To evaluate the probability of the rain stopping.

I do my usual bike check.
The brakes,
The tires,
The gears,
The seat.
This bike is perfect.
I don't even have to adjust the seat's height.
This probably influences my decision to take it.
It's almost waving at me.

Ten minutes later
On the Saint-Germain boulevard,
The rain is heavy,
My hair is damp,
The wet pavement reflects the street lights,
My glasses are covered in raindrops.

I feel tired,
Slowed down,
My legs start to hurt.
A strong wind plays against me
And I forgot to change the gear.
I notice it
And don't change it.

I smile at my inability to predict the weather,
At my ability to be surprised,
At the physical effort I have to make.
This awareness
Along with the elements around me
Make me feel very much alive.
Streets are empty and mine.
I drive where it's not allowed.

I cross a third bridge and hear seagulls.
I close my eyes for a handful of seconds,
First making sure that the road is straight and clear.
I see and remember Bréhat,
This small island off the coast of Brittany
Where there were more seagulls than people
And cars were forbidden.
Everytime I hear seagulls I go back there
For an instant.

I'm almost home.
I hum Summertime...

"Fish are jumpin' and the cotton is high"
...and feel grateful.


  1. How wonderful those moments when one feels absolutely free, when one surrenders oneself to to life, to joy, to the wind, the rain.

  2. Yes. True happiness lies in these moments. In this oneness. And present. Thank you Marty for taking the time to read my poems. I'm back on blogcatalog after months of silence and reading your aphorisms is always a pleasure.