Sunday, May 17, 2009

Shadows In The Rain

I pried myself from the tentacles of my recliner and the siren song of the idiot box. I crawled onto my bike and slowly slipped away from the comfort of my suburban cocoon. I knew she was waiting. I could feel her heart the closer I got to her. I was an addict on my way to score. I have been weakened to be sure, but with every speed bump and bike icon in the lane, I was getting closer.

Nearing the tracks and finally hidden in the trees, the old feelings began to surface. Echoes of the last words the doctor said were repeated in my mind:
"Don't do anything that hurts."
Life hurts. What am I to do? Live a miserable, safe existence? My neck feels great, but I am unhappy. She alone has the answer. It took me days to recover from my last visit. The better I feel, the more I want. The more I take, the longer the recovery, and the greater the regret. I am powerless, the lure twitches and I move forward, mouth agape. Even the ghosts of what once was great and now lies in ruin, cannot breath reason into my aching lungs. I am in the grip. I am lost. The warnings mean nothing.

I pass people walking, they are clueless to the magic next to them, they don't see it. I take the left and leave the park. I cross the bridge and into the wilderness. I read the signs, I know I should resist but I turn anyway and forget logic. I am back in her arms, the primordial smell of the wet leaves and the closed canopy, are all I feel. I am a man again. Reason is gone.
I remember every part of her, every curve. I know from experience not to get comfortable, not to ignore her, she has punished me before without mercy. It is a delicate dance, and the beauty is in the details, not the destination.
I reach the intersection. The choice is brutal. Go forward and get the immediate gratification, only to suffer for days, or be sensible and head back. I have to ride less, to ride more. I have to be smart and go slow. I have to fight every instinct of what I want. The visceral and cerebral wrestle for supremacy. I take the path of reason, and turn my back on the best of her, laid out before me like a dream. Her skies go grey and heavy. The tears fall gently at first, and then heave in waves of sadness. I retreat back to my world. I can't be with her now, and if I am ever with her again, it may never be the same. I have to live with my inadequacies and face the changes that are coming with or without my consent. I have to lay down with my flaws like an enemy. I have to befriend it and learn to exist in its shadow. I will never be the same again. The adjustments never end. Move forward.
Lightning flashes and the thunderous roar envelopes the air for miles. I am unafraid. To die in a beam of light would be glorious, but I have a new burden to endure and I know I will not be taken. The rain buffets me in sheets and flows by the curb like a river. My sins wash off and float away to the pipes and the ditches, dispersing into distant lakes. I am reborn. I will never take her for granted again, but first there must be pain.