Maria Rosa Mills

Bike Commute

The heat. It rose out of the dark
in sticky vapor. Evolution
doesn't work in links,
I learned in school, but biking,
legs aflame, knees aching

their crooked aches, I really believed
I was a half-creature.
Part of a transition species.
Like the fishes with half-legs,
half-fins, I'd swim the humidity
with. I wanted to believe

this body's limits weren't all there was.
That my heaving, hamstrings tightening,
lunging with wobbly quads--
beyond that, the wet mouth kisses,
catcalls, hand-jobs with our heads down
in cars--all of it

was part of being a half-creature
in a species of half-creatures
each extending a failing limb
toward what will come next.