I once hit a girl with a bike
while racing to turn in a report
on seismic wave resistant structures.
Afterthoughts of mass-acceleration
force lingered along
the retrofitting of infill sheer trusses
tuned mass dampers, shock absorbers,
concrete columns all holding my focus.
But the poor dear dragged herself
from side to side swaying through
the bike path like a drunkard.
I had a moment to ponder her particle motion
the complexity of their orbits.
Did she have both flexible and stable features;
would she overcome the state of inertia or just snap?
A blue handlebar flexed in the dip of her back.
The collision set her in a three step stumble.
I observed myself skidding, elbows into the concrete.
My single speed somehow diverged off the path.
She apologized and took full responsibility
too naïve to realize how much I was at fault.
I did not bother to correct her, too distracted
by the numbers behind ungrounded oscillations,
the engineered explanation for a deserved wreck.