Monday, July 18, 2005

earth note 10

tour of the scioto river valley,
mother's day weekend 1995

six thousand bicycles
columbus to portsmouth ohio and back
two hundred and ten miles
collective individualism
asphalt self-indulgence
extra-gentle green-edged ribbon
flat and mildly rolling
springing upon sleepy villages
bare-backed farmers
tractors grunting
herefords guernseys arabians morgans
sunflowers corn timothy clover

when the weather changes every twenty miles
it’s good to get sucked in behind a line of tandems
head down in the rain
water chilled reckoning
let the legs ache
daydream away
piss it all out at the next rest-stop

the prison at chillicothe is always windy
open fields and razor wire
guard towers and trustees
whistle at the lycra buttocks battalion

small talk sometimes more jumps between the lines
where you from which gym are you sleeping in
how many years have you done this ride
voices and wheels blend with the river
scioto river
unruffled accompanist
always giving
guiding the roadway forward
weaving down to the bridge at portsmouth
weathered steel over cold brown water
outstretched arm opening
to simple truths

--- e b bortz

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