Training wheels on a blue children's bicycle
The Coup of My Bike
by G. Louis Heath

Two wheels did not roll easily for this seven-year-old.
Dad added “training wheels,” my alma mater, “nurturing
mother,” to my Schwinn, and I rolled. On my bike, I began
to advance my gait in life, adjusting to the first invention
after fire that brought us out of trees and caves and into
our speedy times. I did not think this way then. My universe
was but my neighborhood and school. It was all about me
and my child’s world.

Round the block from my house on Robinson Street over to
Bird Street, again and again, I rode, always on sidewalk.
Over many circuits I gained speed and confidence, then
pure hubris. I soon became a demon on wheels who lorded
it over The Great Un-Biked six-year-olds. I was living proof
that technology divides people.

My reign as The Great Biker ended when my training wheels
came off. I crashed over on Bird, skinned an elbow and knee.
The six-year olds over there went wild with the joy of the
Great Un-Biked who had staged a coup that felled my bike.

PHOTO: “Training Wheels” by tehvon, used by permission.

G. Louis Heath1

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: G. Louis Heath, Ph.D., Berkeley, 1969, teaches at Ashford University, Clinton, Iowa. He retires in June 2016 because his university is closing. He enjoys reading his poems at open mics. He often bicycles along the Mississippi River, stopping to work on a poem he pulls from his back pocket, weather permitting. His books include Mutiny Does Not Happen Lightly, Long Dark River Casino, and Vandals in the Bomb Factory. His most recent poems have been published in Dead Snakes, Poppy Road Review, Writing Raw, Inkstain Press, Verse-Virtual, Eunoia Review, and Squawk Back.