Clodomira’s legs are whirring pistons. She’s up over 100 revolutions per minute on her bike. The countryside streaks by her and in these few seconds there is no revolutionary struggle, no ultimate leader, no great leap forward.
The fervor of the People dissipates and all is still. She is frozen in the moment, and the moment frozen all around her. The landscape a stilled blur of streaks. In this instant all of existence becomes the object of her consciousness.
Life in this infinitesimal moment is bearable — worth the battle toward transcendence.
A flash and the moment is gone.
The bicycle, a humble 1956 Rabasa, feeling greatly misused upon resuming at that diabolic speed rebels, and disengages its chain breaking into a dizzy wobble. They jackknife.
Clodomira is thrown into the sugar cane detritus — the edge of the field heaped with the sharp husks of post-Marxist labor. Now in mid-air she pictures herself as the radiant spear point of the vanguard, but as she hits the ground a shard of cane husk pierces her abdomen.
Clodomira rises to a sitting position. Our Lady of Charity hovers in the distance in an alcove of roiling cumulonimbus. All manner of birds and land animals are swept into the funnel and disappear.
Clodomira seethes. Oh, to be swept into that vestal vortex. Then she feels her father’s leaden hand on her shoulder, his grip tightening and constricting the blood flow to her head. Then his other hand under her shirt and rubbing her belly.
She is earthbound.
“I need the sound of others practicing to goad me into practicing myself.”
— Philip Glass