The Rural Rider

Contemplations on cycling

Archive for November, 2007

“Praise then the light…

…and creation unfinished.”

I’m riding south on county road 95. It’s one of my very favorites although it’s only a mile or so. The sun is rising, light streaming over the Sierra, below a very high strata of cloud. I struggle with the quote. I know where it comes from: The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin. I know the ending: “creation unfinished”. And it begins with praise. I know the context – the powerful last portion of the novel where Genly Ai and Estraven pull a sledge in desperate flight across the ice.

The wind is blowing from the west-south-west so leaving Davis I had been riding nearly into a headwind. Now, turned due south, it’s almost a cross wind: gusty. The ride up road 31 had been harder than I had expected. The start had been stranger than expected. Now the sunrise is glorious and it lifts my spirits, returning me to the context of the novel, the hard work of the ice crossing, of creation unfinished, as I am unfinished, a work in progress, a journey, and then there was Genly’s reaction to the journey that even as I ride fills me with a fierce burning spirit that lasts the whole ride and afterwards.

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