I remember it
as from a dream:
Stan and I both slowing,
still breathless from the climb.
Ahead of us the road,
foreshortened, fell away
beyond our view.
Stan sitting up,
hands resting for a moment on the bars
before they drop down to the brakes:
I'm looking where I'm going here!
Saying it as Randy vanished with the road,
a small dot hurtling down.
Then at the bottom, tight right-hander.
Of Randy, not a sign; but round the bend,
propped by its pedal, standing in the kerb
and upright, nonchalant almost,
as though he'd put it there,
his bike. Back wheel a figure eight.
Next thing, we see a line that might
almost be painted in the road
to draw attention to the bend
so perfect is the curve of it,
a long black mark that hugs the kerb,
burnt rubber from the tyres;
and on the chevron by the roadside,
a shattered red reflector;
while to our left, the hedge demolished.
A loud groan from beyond the hedge,
the star-shape of the red reflector
imprinted in the forehead's
bone and tissue.
And then the ambulance;
and last of all, the doctor's query:
"A motor cycle accident? Must be!"
We never did get over
the way the bicycle had parked itself.
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