Cykel / Bicycle



The miner’s bike would have looked odd in the streets of Stockholm, but on Mars or on
the Moon it fitted its purpose the way a canoe fits a Canadian stream.

R. Heinlein, 1952

Image: Lina Persson

The world shrunk and I could visit my friend in Vänge whenever I wanted to.
Places interconnect in new ways. There was a straight path through the forest between Halla
and Viklau which was a kilometer shorter than the long route by car. With my bicycle I can
easily stop, take a side route and see where the grown-over path leads. Daily commuting is
repeated with variations.

In the new territories I can navigate freely around and across the borders
between city traffic, concrete blocks, private villas, the nature reserve, industrial area, and
cemetery. By a lonely lake the path has dried up and created a soft black leather-like surface
for the tires. In a forest opening, a small village of caravans and campers fit for annual living.
One caravan appears to be a kitchen. A garbage dump, a DVD disc.

Does one want to live in a display window by the road?

The cemetery lies calm and heavy, I wheel along and time almost comes to a
standstill. Organized timelessness, an open grave, large pine trees filter away the sounds of the
city. The gates are open. Will that light ever turn green? Rented apartment blocks serve as
noise barriers for detached houses. My feet are wiser in an era that I control. Never stop
moving, actively balancing the weight. I budge the base of a traffic-sign. Pass dangerous car
doors. After zigzagging between blocks, bloody fucking car, I reach the bicycle overpass.
Open view. Peddle faster and time shrinks.

I bike home even though I don´t have to, the streets are empty and dark. Do they
remove graffiti all night? When you are done waiting for your buss I will have arrived. When
are they going to fix that pothole? Oh, so that´s how it fits… OK, I guess it wasn´t a short-cut.
The hedgehogs are awake and three dressed in neon are putting out a small fire by the metro
track. Send Mari an email tomorrow. Take a photo of a registration plate. The lights on the
graves glimmer. The rain is hardly ideal but probably better than the snow. Who works the
night shift in the crematorium? A filled grave.

A hare spooks me, races for a while with me and with time and space too.

Miscellaneous / / Cykel / Bicycle

Editors: Lars-Erik Hjertström-Lappalainen, Annika von Hausswolff, Jonatan Habib Engqvist.
Editor in chief: Jonatan Habib Engqvist.

Contact: peace[at]tsnok.se

tsnoK 2022. authors are responsible for their own texts.
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