Homeward I ride,
through arrogant traffic and deep exhaust;
over cold ruts and fresh powder;
snow striking my eyes until pellets of salt-ice
weigh my lids shut.
It’s uphill now,
my twenty-seven speeds reduced to three
frozen shut. As the sweat breaks
I feel newly transformed—a phoenix,
or at very least
a butterfly, beautiful, strong, special.
Something else I have become; something
undaunted by the cold, the sting of snow,
the impatient drivers, the spinning wheels.
I practically hover home
my three speeds now reduced to one
when one is all I really need, today.
Oh, how disappointing
to walk in the door, strip off
fogged glasses, look down
and find myself me,
yes still me, unchanged—sweater
covered in cat hair, drab and grey.
The dogs, not sharing
my dismay at all, woo with joy
because I am still me, just me,
and we are together
December 24, 2008