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Royce Union

By John I. Blair

My childhood rides on bikes
Were short and dicey;
At first too small
I later showed a lack
Of judgment that collided me
With curbs and cars.

My teens were spent
In someone else’s auto,
Bumming lifts and always
Thrall to others’ needs.

But when I left for college,
My Dad decided I could use
A bike for transportation
And bought a drab two-wheeler,
Royce Union, built in Holland.

This contra-cool creation,
Designed for Dutch commuters,
Stood steady on the road and strong
(To carry loads of cheeses I supposed).

Just to find a parking stand
(When dreams of cars for everyone
Were not yet faded) had me foxed,
And the hilltop campus
Made it slick to coast downtown
But hell to pump back up.

* * *
And then one autumn day
I found a way to ride
Into the golden countryside
Along a shining river.

My wheels were wings
Flinging me beneath the trees,
Beside vast pastures
Filled with doe-eyed cows,
Up stony slopes,
Down gurgling glens,

Wind in my hair, my ears
Singing from the rush of air,
Eyes in tears, nose flushed
With dusty autumn smells.

My dumpy bike, so black and plain,
Transfigured to a magic steed,
Speeding me to adventure,
Taking me to uncharted lands,
Making me rejoice at my
Royce Union.

©2007 John I. Blair

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