Wednesday, 16 April 2008

linda pastan

Stationary Bicycle

You pedal furiously
into a future you're trying
hard to prolong
by this exercise,
though the landscape
that rolls by here is time
passing, with its lists
of things undone
or not done properly,
all this effort,
the fierce monotony
of this ride feels
much like life itself -
going nowhere
redeemed in part
by the imagination, its trance
of rivers and trees,
its shady roads unwinding
just beyond your closed eyes,
or even on the tv screen
you sometimes watch
as you ride, mile
after mile of drama
unfolding while you pump
and pump, proceeding
from here to here
at twenty theoretical
miles per hour, your legs
beginning to throb as if
the body communicates
in a code of pain, saying
never mid the future,
you're here
right now, alive.


Marta said...

This is quite troubling for a cyclist, there so much metaphor but also, so uch analogial experience and meory. I don't know what to think

swiss said...

the following from elaine scarry seems applicable to the suffering of cycling (or in her case ascetics!) in that the act of self inflicted suffering

'so emphasizing the body that the contents of the world are cancelled and the path is clear for an unworldly, contentless force'