By Mark E. Smith
The concrete of the sidewalk feeds under my power wheelchair like a conveyor belt of cold gray slab at eight miles per hour – but, it seems much faster. It is much faster. Everything is scaled down – my wheelchair, the narrow path, me. Buildings and homes loom large – gigantic, leaning creatures, casting intimidating shadows. But, I know by the ever-increasing cadence of the sidewalk expansion joints clicking against my wheels that I’m going faster, and faster, and faster, where the shadows can’t hold on to me for long. The clicks from my wheels go from countable to one loud vibration, and all that lines the sidewalk becomes a blur, the colors of buildings and homes streaking along my periphery like paint on an abstract canvas. It’s all noise and color, color and noise, noise and color, color and noise. And, it’s at that moment – always at that moment! – that my wheels leave the ground, and I rocket into the sky, headed into the scattering of clouds, and the rest… well… it just stops.