Clifton King

Rookie - 193 Points (December 24,1943 / Long Beach, California)

Sunday Ride - Poem by Clifton King

When you ride a motorcycle
it’s not important the roads you travel
lead to where you’re going.

The back road to Laguna Beach
snakes through Silverado Canyon
where clusters of small cabins
cling to hillsides, hidden
by a camouflage of trees and shadow.
You carve your way down the valley,
attack each turn, lean deep, defy gravity
and common sense. Your foot pegs
leave long scars in the pavement.
That staccato rasp of straight pipes
hangs in the air as you dash
through tunnels of shade,
flash across plateaus of sunlight.
Then, just as sudden as death itself,
clouds erase the sky and rain falls.
That double yellow becomes slick
as a used car salesman. Raindrops
sting like gravel tossed from heaven.
You creep into Laguna Beach,
find a Laundromat, strip down
to your boxers. There you stand,
a skinny, shivering seventeen-year-old,
wondering what might happen
should someone come in to do laundry.

Topic(s) of this poem: poem

Form: Free Verse

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, August 15, 2015

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