Descending Mt. Washington

…that Calvinistic sense of Innate Depravity and Original Sin, from whose visitations, in some shape or other, no deeply thinking mind is always and wholly free.
—Melville, “Hawthorne and His Mosses”

One-eyed mesmerist, the ethereal bicycle
Clotheslined to the black suv
Looped its dollop of spoke light
Like a laser whirligig—
The front wheel spinning
A narrative of doom-rife prophecy
Over and over, the inky asphalt
Coiling below, vague and unlit.
That flagrant disc, tab of Ambien
Loosing its potion of unconsciousness,
Transfixed me mile after mile,
Viscous fog muffling
The wiper blades’ synchronistic
Ticks—I struggled to follow the Blazer
Bearing its silver, wraith-like Raleigh
Along the old logging route, past
Gravel-strewn, upward-slanted chutes
Bulldozed for trucks gone brakeless,
Gear-sheared, and godless,
No hands but staunch drivers’ to cajole
Zigzagging rigs from shrill velocity
To mute standstill…still
That reflector beckoned with false
Fire until my eye contrived the seductive
Beacon as its twinned familiar, kindling
Sin-slick reverie on tar grooved toward O-
Blivion, and my soul, now conscience-calmed,
Plunged toward those gates, hell-bent and ravening.