This Friday’s poem, Nun on a Bicycle, comes from Jonathan Edwards’ debut collection My Family and Other Superheroes. A collection that takes inspiration from the unlikeliest of subjects including: Sophia Loren, the kebabby in Merthyr and a nun on a bicycle, My Family and Other Superheroes has been shortlisted for the Fenton Aldeburgh First Collection Prize. The winner of the esteemed award will be announced at the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival in November.
Nun on a Bicycle
Now here she comes, rattling over cobbles,
powered by her sandals, the gentle downhill
and the grace of God. Now here she comes, her habit
what it was always waiting to become:
a slipstream. Past stop signs, the pedestrian
traffic at rush hour, the humdrum mopeds,
on a day already thirty in the shade:
with her robe fluttering like solid air,
she makes her own weather. Who could blame her,
as the hill sharpens, she picks up speed and smiles
into her future, if she interrupted
the Our Fathers she’s saying in her head,
to say Whee, a gentle Whee, under her breath?
O cycle, sister! Look at you now, freewheeling
through the air conditioning of the morning –
who’s to say the God who isn’t there
isn’t looking down on you and grinning?