march 1/BIKE

70 degrees
front room, bike stand
30 minutes

It’s hard not running, but I want to make sure that I don’t get into another cycle of subluxations, so I’m not out by the gorge today. It makes it a little easier that the sidewalk is covered in sheer ice which will soon turn into a puddle than a pool than a river or a lake all hoping to enter my boot and soak my socks. I wonder what the mississippi river road path looks like right now? Yuck. I despise the Great Melt that happens every almost-spring. Thawing. Dripping. Soaking. Oozing. Pooling. Freezing. Thawing. Dripping. Soaking. Oozing. Pooling. Freezing. When will it end? Not anytime soon. It’s supposed to snow again on Saturday.

It was last March that I (re?) discovered poetry in my first class at the Loft. To honor that discovery, I’ve decided to work through Bernadette Mayer’s list of writing experiments–the same list we used in class last year. Some of these will involve being by the gorge, running or walking, some of them will not. Today’s did not.

The assignment:┬áPick a work or phrase at random, let mind play freely around it until a few ideas have come up, then seize on one and begin to write. Try this with a non-connotative word, like “so” etc.

I settled on the phrase on my coffee mug, “Let it Be.” Quickly into the exercise I wondered, what is IT in this phrase? I turned IT into an acronym: information technologist, impending tests, icky tacos, incanting toads, inky trails, infinite troubles…I made a list of 25 or 30 nouns that IT stood for. Then I wrote a poem using some of them:

Let it Be

Let ink trails be the secret way
into a world waiting to save us
from ignorant tyrants.
Let those trails lead us to intelligent trees–
the ones that know better than us
with our immovable theories and our
irritating tantrums.

We–
the inexplicable termites
possessing indefatigable troubles
wasting all the important tissues
on our indigo tears.
Why can’t we be more like those indifferent trapezoids–
not interested in even, parallel lines
not caring to reach infinitely upwards?

Let incanting toads be what finally
sings us to sleep
so we can dream better dreams
imagining terrains that believe in us.

Let invisible threads reveal themselves
so we may see how we belong
connected, tethered to each other–
vulnerable to violence yet
also to the inviting touch of another.