As published in the online literary journal Typishly here
I’m riding the electrical current of an
Electric bicycle along Bates Avenue,
With a Cool Running soundtrack
On full readout.
The street is level, the sun squat, the air velour, the grass snapped, and no birds will look at me.
I tread about a turn and
To breathe in the gander.
A void jumps loose
From the surrounding frame and
Pigeon slips its way towards me at a
Half run-walk shuffle.
The shuffle turns into a lope and it
Jumps in front.
About my height with a solid heft edging
Over “blue mesh shorts, a black t-shirt, and a shitty little ‘stach”
(my police description).
He’s young and his eyes are
Wild and desperate and
Candy coated
With lumps of happy menace.
“Gimme your fucking bike man! You gotta gun?”
He reaches clownishly for a killing-thing which
Never appears.
“Yah I gotta gun, looks like you have one too, lemme see yours.”
I say, but he doesn’t hear.
His brain is too self-caved to caveat the wound that weeps my words,
And foam from his mouth continues to drip drop on
Top of me.
He reaches for the wheels, the chains, the spokes, and fumbles
As I struggle against him, locked tight
To the bike
— My most precious babe.
I’m on a test drive from a store down the street.
“An electric bike. Well well, only $800,”
I thought.
I’ll take her out for a spin, go on a little adventure.”
I do not
The money.
“Where’s your gun?!”
But he won’t produce, vamoose, or let go
So I keep crab locked as his spittle flecks
Against my face in little spouts.
“I’m fuckin crazy man. You know how crazy I am?”
He seems pretty crazy.
“I’ll fuckin’ kill you!”
But there is no gun.
That much I can tell.
So with a smile crawling to grimace I tell him,
Much too politely,
That sorry but no, he can’t have it.
“It isn’t mine to give.”
“Fuckin give me your bike!”
He clutches against me like a
Lifeline lover,
Stumbling through from side to side with little tremors
Of aggression.
The anger at his hand and in his throat,
Though clear in existence,
Is muddy in pursuit.
His face crushes closer, eyes tinted
By a pale thick immaturity of thought, lost
In hallucinogenic
Ice cream headaches.
“I need it to get to my girlfriend man!”
A new development!
Am I somehow in the middle of an epic romance?
A wanderer intersecting the dirty hub of fate’s fortune?
Could this moment turn his life around?
And mine as well!?
Swelling us forward on the same giddy tide
That rides his eyes
To spear-pop goodtime Pop Rocks,
Sprint our human claws forward along the Normandy storming beach,
And Anti-Rage the Anti-Christ into a hippie blister cloud burst!
A silver gleam domes forward alongside our violent thrash and honks.
I don’t know whether it’s at me or at him,
If the lady shouting words and noises and wails out her window is
Upset or simply tired of
But the result is that the guy,
This tan-massed dreamer of befuddled lividity,
Is distracted,
Cannoning away from me to
Lash rhapsodically at her car for a few moments,
And then quick as oil sizzle;
Rears back into the ether.
The metal collapsed next to me a wracked and pitiful thing.
My face covered in unknown moistures,
And the day
Just beginning.
“You asshole,
I yell.
“You dumb shit! What the fuck is wrong with you?!”
The whole world was our oyster
You schmuck.
It was a new beginning —
I felt pregnant!
The two of us on that asphalt that day, lousing it out…
For a moment there,
I really thought
We could have had it all.
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