Forgive the long-ish post to follow. I wrote this one years ago (or so
it seems) when the stand-alone AHH website was up and there was a $20
credit in the offing. There were a number of good poems crafted for
the site. Not sure what happened to the site or the other poems. I'm
no poet, but was inspired by a beautiful bike and the company behind
it. FWIW, I give you:
The Resurrection of A. Homer Hilsen
There it was, there it sat.
Bars akimbo, tires flat.
Cluster missing, saddle worn.
Dangling hemp-wrap. Dusty. Torn.
Rubbed the down-tube, read the name:
A. Homer Hilsen – of Rivendell fame.
I knelt to worship and wondered why.
Lost, or stolen? Left to die?
Who would leave it? Could I? Could You?
I asked around, nobody knew.
I felt linked like a chain to its ultimate fate,
the local bike shop was open ‘till eight…
They told me the story of a man dressed in wool.
He lived in the country, his glass always half full.
The bike was his passion, his comfort, his dream.
Fittings for Mark’s rack, lugs filled with cream.
But no one had seen him, at least for a while.
The man had moved on. My lips cracked a small smile.
I asked the police what the policy was.
They showed me the poster: Auction by Fuzz.
I showed up quite early, on the day of the deal.
Misty and quiet, the sky painted like steel.
I noticed the Hilsen being eyed by a punk,
mixed in with the lawnmowers, car parts and junk.
He grabbed a brake lever and gave it a tug,
Spat on a pedal, then moved on with a shrug.
The auction moved slowly, through toilets and tools,
Something for everyone: the dealers, the fools.
And then it was up there, wheeled up by a cop.
The pads squealed on the front rim. It came to a stop.
The bidding began with the auctioneers’ pitch:
“A handsome blue bike for the not quite so rich!”
It was me and the punk, and a man I could see
who was standing alone near a lone Redwood tree.
It had to be mine. I just had to win.
To let Homer go home without me was a sin!
The punk shrugged again when three figures were spoke.
Fished through his pockets, confirmed he was broke.
I looked near the tree, heard the faint ping of a bell,
The auctioneer paused, raised the gavel. It fell.
“It’s mine! Can’t believe it!” My grin ear to ear.
I cashed out in seconds, lost a fight with a tear.
I wheeled Hilsen homeward and vowed to be kinder.
Put him up on my work stand and loosened the binder.
I thought about fate, how I won, how I got’m.
Flipped the frame in the stand to examine the bottom.
As soon as the upside was more downside than most,
A small rolled up paper fluttered out from the post:
“I’m happy you own me, the pleasure’s all mine.
That punk would’ve stripped me and sold me for wine.”
“Now we can share them, those days on the road.
Losing all count of the friendships we sowed.”
“You see, I’m attracted to people like you;
People who dream of a journey or two.”
I’m sure when I’m older, my legs tired of turning,
I’ll think of this day; of the joy and the yearning.
I’ll pass it along to a like-minded good soul;
dusty and weathered, but ready to roll.
The bike will live on, with new stories to tell;
new owner, new road, and the faint ping of a bell.