I am pedaling up

a steep pocked sidewalk.

I push the pedals

pull on the handlebars —

the bicycle barely

moves. I will not dismount

Will not surrender feet

to cement. I will

not. I will push

pedal, push. Feel the battle

in my breath. Heart

hammering against chest.

The wheel turns spoke

by spoke measuring

the distance to the top

and then the hill at last

plateaus and I can pedal

easily again.