Straight from the Horses Mouth

I opened up today by opening a book.

Front to back, and I closed it.

I opened up today by touching objects moving in the opposite direction at the same time.

I opened up today and I felt gone.

I was in the center of Nicollet biking south, I cut in between a bus to get a jump on the light ahead, as I did this another bus ran along side the first bus and myself, going the opposite direction at the exact same moment, pinning me in the middle.  I did not think, I could not think.  There was no time.  I put my hands out, I opened up, and I touched both of them simultaneously.  I road it out with no hands.  Smiles this big never happen, a rush like cocaine, but no drug.  I felt untouchable.  I took this into account as I stopped at the next red-light.  I looked back and the bus to my right was behind me.  The other bus was fading away in the distance.  I did this and waited for the light to turn green.  The sun was going down.

Cars zoomed on the cross street in front of where I was standing, ahead there was a horse-driven buggy.  The buggy was traveling at a steady pace.  The horse must have been agitated because as I passed, alongside another biker, the horse stopped abruptly, stood on its’ hind-legs and lurched forward unlatching itself from its harness.  Every harness and restraint was torn, with violent and forceful movements, completely off.  With one swoop, up and down, of the horse’s powerful head the metal bit was released from the horse’s mouth.  The brown and spotted horse must have had enough.  Bits of leather and chain-link were scattered on the ground, strewn as I rode by dodging each piece as they flew in all directions.  The buggy came to a halt, driver and passenger watching in awe.  The horse turned at the frightened crowd on the sidewalk once taking notice, and then at the carriage and the driver and took off in the opposite direction.  I coasted ahead.  The horse trod down the street unaffected by its audience and then it turned towards me and started moving again.  It was coming towards me.  I stopped in the street and waited for it.  There was nothing to do, I had not caused harm to this horse.  I should not worry.  I ruffle no feathers and no birds shall bring harm, correct?  As if there is no where to go, I stand and wait.  I do not challenge, I engage.  The horse could easily outrun myself and my bike, or it would have been a photo-finish, so I wait.  I thought for a few moments and mounted my bike.  I stood still.  My body facing away from the horse, in the direction I was going, my head facing toward the horse coming at me, from the opposite direction.  The horse is charging ahead, completely naked of restraint, in slow-motion.  I can see every muscle in the horses body by now, he was right on me.  I can see the pain in his eyes; the days and nights of carrying drunken humanoids up and down asphalt streets, that of which convey pain to the touch upon sore and inflamed hooves.  Greener pastures exist.  The driver snapping his whip and calling for movement when there is no more left in the horses body.  I can see veins popping through muscles within the horses hide releasing anger.  I stand prepared without flinching, my left foot steadied on my pedal in the ready position to lunge forward.  From here to anywhere and possibly the afterlife.  The horse reaches me and I push forward with my left leg, there is a stoplight ahead about a half a blocks distance, and we are at a steady pace.  Neck and neck.  We have the green light.  The horse is at a gallop head down body elegantly postured, I am over my handle bars and low to my bike.  The bystanders are watching.  I will beat this horse to the light, I know this, but I am still unsure.  The horse is a powerful animal and I had been lounging on a couch reading for two hours.  We are the only ones in the street.  About fifteen feet away from the intersection the light turns yellow for us, click.  We keep the same pace.

I have no rear brake on my bike and I am weary of cross traffic, yet I keep going, the horse is losing for the moment.  I am pedaling harder than I have ever pedaled.  The horse’s gallop is menacing.  It is a dead heat.  I think of stopping, hesitate, look both ways, the light is red and I blow the light.  I beat the horse through the first set of lights.  The horse does the same and keeps right on me.  I cannot believe this.  I could feel the horse breathing down my neck.  I am in a race with a horse.  The next light is green, and we are about a block away, as I remember.  I think I can beat him before it turns red.  The horse agrees without a doubt keeping up with me.  The pace has not changed, the horse is coming down on me now.  My shoes almost lose grip on the pedals, and rebalance myself and lean forward.  I push harder with my feet, the horse is not on top of me anymore, the horse is right next to me.  We are neck and neck.  I see the green light turn yellow, click.  We are fifteen feet away, head to head, eye on the prize.  We are going, people are shouting.  Five feet, I am winning.  I pull my front brake which creates a screech and barely slows me down, I pull my feet off the pedal and hold them to my front tire.  I am unsteady and almost fall as we enter the crosswalk, I am in the lead.  I have won.  Before I can think about how I won, I look up and see the horse careen past me.

On the sidewalk people are yelling, the horse looks confused as if the race is not over.  He circles for a fraction of a second and then I see a blur of city bus and traffic.  The horse was picked up and moved about thirty feet with cross traffic, and placed on the ground.  A suffering animal is turned to road kill in the heavy traffic of downtown Minneapolis.  Everything came to a sudden halt.  Metro transit had won chicken against a horse.  I thought about the situation and realized I had almost been crushed by two busses and trampled by a horse.  What a day.


I then biked to the liquor store to pick up a bottle of wine.


About Terry Scott Niebeling

Hello, My name is Terry Scott, a human being with flaws. twitter: @sirterryscott Buy my ebooks:
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One Response to Straight from the Horses Mouth

  1. danthedan says:

    hooooly cow, T.

    that sounds like something out of a gosh dang movie. I had a similar experience with the buses just recently, but nothing quite like the horse.

    great imagery.

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