Transit Alternative

In a sullen fit
I spent that distant summer
on no train.
This was before I had a car
when my bicycle had been mostly stolen.
Except for a couple of emergency occasions,
I took the city by foot.

This was back
when you could pretend
that the city only meant Manhattan
especially if you actually lived in Manhattan
but it still meant
that trips to Staten Island
would require a little flexibility
on those self-imposed rules.

But who needed to go to Staten Island anyway?

I lived on the Upper West
and worked in midtown
and occasionally went downtown
and boy,
were my calves cut.
Biking already helped
but this daily activity further shaped
the one part of my body
that was regularly worked.

When people came
from out of town
I would usually meet them
at Penn Station
or Grand Central and then
we’d slowly walk the streets
that I was growing to know
increasingly well.

By the time I went back to school
I was ready for wheels again.
I got a new bike
and was willing to be driving
just about everywhere.
I was stricter once
when I was young
and my calves were cut.

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