Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Words on a Page

One of the bloggers I follow shared a poem in her latest post, which got me thinking. I'm not a huge fan of poetry. It's got its place, certainly. But you really have to think and absorb the words as you read them. Otherwise, you usually miss the point completely.

Since I don't particularly enjoy reading poetry, I rarely ever choose to write it either. But about 10 years ago, when taking a writing course, several of our assignments required writing poems.

If you think reading poetry takes great thought, try writing it once. This is no masterpiece by any stretch, but since it's probably the best of the poems I had to write, and since it is motorcycle-related, I thought I'd share it here.

It was written not long after I bought my Yamaha 650 V-Star Classic (three bikes ago!), which is why it is titled...

The V-Star Classic

It's a beautiful sunny Spring day on the dirt-and-gravel
Lot adjacent to the little-used warehouse.
Sitting alone, unperturbed is a V-Star Classic.
As the sunlight glints off of the beast just right,
It catches my eye,
Beckoning for me to come a bit closer.
The blood-red paint over burgundy accents
Stands in sharp contrast to
Its twinkling, glistening chrome.
As I step nearer I can just imagine grabbing hold,
Throwing my right leg across its back
And climbing aboard.
I stand it up at the same time as my bottom sinks
Luxuriously into the ample leather saddle.
The tank is wide between my legs. Meaty.
No other way to describe
The feel of this great machine.
My hands tighten on the grips and I squeeze
First the brake lever and then the clutch.
My left foot moves to the peg automatically,
Toes tensing and itching to drop the machine into gear.
I glance surreptitiously down and find
To my delight, the keys are in the ignition.
I look around. No one is watching.
Before I know it, my thumb brings the beast to life.
It vibrates gently under me,
Speaking to me in a deep bass rumble.
Kickstand up. Gearshift down. Clutch eased out.
And I am rolling, rumbling quietly away.
I near the highway. No cars are coming
As I lean the beast into the road.
Roll on the throttle, shifting
Smoothly up through all four gears.
The wind is in my hair and in my heart,
The joy is indescribable
As the yellow lines streak steadily by.
"What's happening?" a voice asks.
Bringing me out of my reverie.
"Nice bike," I tell the guy.
"Thanks," he says, "you ride?"
As I smile and walk away sadly
My heart beats slower in its latent lament.

Our first real road trip on the then-new bikes. Luray, Virginia was our destination.
The V-Star 650 was a decent starter bike. But I really enjoyed the greater power in the V-Star 1300, which I just recently traded for a BMW.

I don't really miss either bike. They never felt like an extension of my body like the F650GS does. I'll probably miss the 1300 on the highways. But we tend to avoid those because back roads are just so much more fun.

What sort of rider are you? Cruiser? Dual-purpose? Sport bike? Have you ridden other types before? What do you like best about your bike of choice?


Shybiker said...

Great questions. I'm sure we can all write a book in response.

I started on a cruiser 'cause it was pretty and I didn't know other types of bikes gave superior riding-experiences. Then I moved to a dual-motorcycle situation: a sportbike for thrills and a tourer for regular riding. Both styles of bikes provide their own appeal and I enjoy both.

Fuzzygalore said...

"The tank is wide between my legs. Meaty."

You're naughty! ;)

What type of rider am I? Hmm. Good question. I don't know anymore. I started strictly with sportbikes. Now I ride a naked bike for the most part ( Speed Triple) which allows me to ride it like a sportbike but without being folded up on it. I do like to ride it longish distances... so...? I dunno sport-tourer, I guess?

Yes. Sport-tourer. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

ToadMama said...

ShyB, I probably started on a cruiser for the same reason. I so wish I'd discovered dual-sport sooner.

Fuzzy, get your mind out of the gutter! :-) Sport-tourer sounds appropriate to me. I guess I'd fall into that category, too. Although we do plan on hitting more dirt/gravel roads this year. Maybe adventuring sport tourer?