poem for thursday.

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Lessons of our Childhood

Remember the time the three of us
played crack the whip
and Greg crashed his bike so bad
he had to go to the hospital?
That moldy old rope we were using
got all wrapped up in his front wheel.
Our quiet neighborhood street shook
with thunder when he slammed the pavement.
I ran into tell Mom.
She scooped him up so fast.
Got him onto the kitchen floor
to wait for Dad to get home.
Greg’s elbow was torn
so jagged and his lip
was split in two. Now,
I can’t remember how many
teeth he was missing,
but it was more than one.
On the way to the hospital
Mom, you, and me were
crammed into the backseat
of Dad’s cream colored Volvo.
Greg was reclined up front
just moaning and bleeding.
Dad sped the whole way.

The ER was really busy and time
slowly dripped by like the faucet
in the old kitchen that Dad
never got around to fixing.
I guess a kid’s bike accident
didn’t take priority to the fevers
and stab wounds in that rundown city hospital.

After he finally saw the doctor
he kind of limped out.
Holding onto Dad’s pocket
like it was the only thing holding him up.
His eyes half closed and bruised plum purple.
27 stitches remember?
12 in his elbow and 15 in his lip.
A whole mess of cotton stuffed
in his mouth where his teeth used to be.
When we got home Mom
put the TV in his room,
and gave him that little silver bell
to ring if he needed anything.
Grandma and Grandpa even came over
and brought him some videos to watch
and ice cream to eat.

After that Mom and Dad
never told us we couldn’t play
crack the whip, never even
told us to more careful. I guess they
wanted us to learn our own lessons,
and they knew sometimes
it hurt to be a kid.

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About Pineapple

He tried to call himself, "Malibu." But, you know the rules - you don't get to pick your own nickname. The word "pineapple" came to mind. Sorta tropical, spikey & rough, sweet on the inside. And so a nickname was born. "Bike mechanic, poet, sage, former collegiate hockey star. Ok, maybe not a star." (This should really be updated. He works for New Belguim now.) "i am full time bicycle mechanic, and all around nice guy. like to ride bikes, but not very far. like poetry, candle-light dinners, and short walks on the beach. i don't like getting hassled, and i don't like capitalization." Fort Collins, Colorado, USA

6 Replies to “poem for thursday.”

  1. Hey man nice story. I am sure it brings up a childhood memory of some type of cycling incident in all on this site. Thanks. (I for one am not going to play crack the whip anymore)

  2. …you mean like the time as a kid on vacation, i just knew i could take the dare of riding down that steep dirt road on somebody else’s bike cuz, heck, i ride my owm bike at home, no handed all the time, everywhere ???…

    …didn’t involve a hospital (that time) but lots a’ bactine n’ bandages…road rash supremo…

  3. wow. in a really painful way that reminded me of the time i caught my 8 year old penis and testicles in between the chain and ring of a baby bike flying downhill. my asshole buddy eric, whose father used to punch holes in the wall, dared me to ride the piece of shit. i had to show all my moms friends my purple package for weeks on end. 22 years later and i have 7 stitches above my eye for crashing here in shanghai on a snowy nite. not much has changed. goooo drunkcyclist!

  4. Yup. Memories of my friend sliding a skateboard under the rear wheel of my bike after I jumped a ramp…never have had a stitch though…knock on wood.

  5. two years as a courier in nyc.
    two years as a courier in portland, oregon.
    two years riding for a university team in japan.
    26 years without a helmet.
    7 days after my head taking the blow to take care of my body after an accident.
    why no helmet still?

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