To A Boy Walking His Bike Uphill

I don’t envy you your mortal enemies –

coaches, scoutmasters, priests, uncles,

arrogant enough to tell you how you must live –

who want you to believe the only regimen

to go from boy to man takes huffing, puffing,

gritting of teeth, spasms in calves and thighs,

a catch in your ribcage — pain

 

Shouts and hoots from passing cars confirm

the tyranny of what you’ve been taught to believe:

candy ass, for one thing; sissy, for another,

that you need to “earn those abs”

 

What I do envy is that you just don’t seem

to give a shit:

 

the flaps of your helmet swing freely under your chin,

no tears I can see, a steady march uphill,

teeth riveted in the silence of a courage

bold enough to muffle fear

 

I like your private smile at the pinnacle,

how you snap your helmet tight,

casually mount the bike,

arch up the front wheel into the wind

and pedal furiously downhill

 

Fly now, iconoclast, fly

 

 

 

 

By |2017-10-16T17:20:07+00:00October 16th, 2017|Poem of the Week|Comments Off on To A Boy Walking His Bike Uphill